Dorothy Sprague Hemenway

Dorothy Sprague Deming was born May 31st, 1918.  She was the daughter of Harold Cleveland Deming and Alice Maude Sprague, both of Woodstock, Carleton County, Province of New Brunswick, Canada.  In 1935, at the age of 17, she attended Carleton County Vocational School to learn shorthand, typewriting and bookkeeping under Grace McLaughlin and Helen Shaw where she tied for first ranking in a class of 36. She went on to become organist and choir director at Wilmot Church, chosen by the professor because she got along with everyone.  She put on such a beautiful musical program there that chairs were set up in the lobby and there was standing room only during one Easter Service where Herby Weber played “Meditation” by Thais which brought tears to everyone’s eyes.  You could have heard a pin drop.  On the 5th of June 1943, she married Vernon Eric Box of Fredericton, County of York, Province of New Brunswick.  After becoming a Lieutenant of the Canadian Infantry Corps, he was killed in action on the 22nd of February 1945 at the battle of Goch, Germany and was buried in Holten Holland.  Taking an interest in art, she completed a six-weeks’ course in Art at the Observatory Art Centre, Summer Session, the University of New Brunswick, gaining “excellent” standing August 12, 1952.  Her teacher was Fritz Brantner.   She also attended Mount Allison University.  By 1953 she was working for the Canadian Consulate General, first in the Seed Potato Office and then in the Dept. of External Affairs and was admitted to the United States working as a stenographer for the Seattle branch.  A friend, George, couldn’t take her out one evening, so she decided to go folk-dancing on her own.  Providentially, she met Philip Hemenway.  He took her on group outings hiking and camping and they were married May 25th 1957.  She became the mother of two sons: Jeffrey Deming Hemenway (1958) and Harold James Hemenway (1959).  Dorothy Hemenway now became a full-time loving wife and mother who raised her sons in the Christian faith all the while retaining her Canadian citizenship.   On June 26, 2006, Philip Hemenway died of heart failure.  On December 21st, 2010, after coming down with a severe case of pneumonia, she was admitted to Highline Hospital.  This coincided with a lunar eclipse.  Doctors installed a trache tube for her breathing and transferred her to Regional Hospital where she was pronounced “vent-dependent” and then she was transferred to Seattle Medical & Rehab where she died May 14, 2011 after four-and-a-half months in the hospital at the age of 92.  She was a loving, giving wife and mother who will be greatly missed.

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