Memorial services will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, October 9, 2021 at McFarland Lutheran Church, 5529 Marsh Road, with Rev. Tim Dean officiating. Live streaming of the service will take place on the McFarland Lutheran Church facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/McFarlandLutheranChurch. Burial will follow in Lower McFarland Cemetery. Friends may greet the family from 10:00 AM until the time of service at church on Saturday.
Virginia (Joseph) Dodson passed away on Monday, August 9, 2021 at the age of 77. She was born in Buffalo, New York on January 6, 1944, the first child of John Arthur Joseph, Jr. and Loraine Marie Fuhr. In 1965, she graduated Manga Cum Laude with a B.A. in Zoology from Ohio Wesleyan, a small liberal arts college. Ginny received a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship and attended Yale University where she met her future husband, Stanley Ivan Dodson. They were married on January 13, 1967, in Seattle where they attended the University of Washington. After receiving his doctorate, Stanley took a job at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Zoology Department. Ginny had also been working on her doctorate in zoology, finished her dissertation in Wisconsin, and received her doctorate in 1971.
From 1970 to 1973, the Dodsons lived in Blue Mounds, Wisconsin, and then purchased an historic home in McFarland where they lived for twenty years. Their daughter Sarah was born on September 19, 1972. From 1974-1982 during the summers, Ginny and Stanley taught students and undertook research projects at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory outside of Crested Butte, Colorado. Ginny worked as a lecturer in zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and later she graduated from MATC in 1986 with a degree in computer sciences. She became a computer programmer and trained other employees at American Family Insurance until her retirement in 2007.
Through the years, Ginny served as a gracious hostess for the many parties held at their home for Stanley’s graduate students. There was always lots of laughter at these parties and in the Dodson home in general. The Dodson smiles were frequent and infectious.
The Dodson family joined McFarland Lutheran Church in 1977 where Ginny was a council member, played hand bells, was a member of the Elizabeth Circle and served on the Care of Creation Committee.
Ginny’s eclectic interests were many and varied. A lover of classical and baroque music, Ginny was a founding member of the Winds of Southern Wisconsin in the early 1980 and enjoyed playing every type of recorder. She was a certified leader in the Tai Chi Fundamentals, and was a long-time member of the Tai Chi Center of Madison. Ginny enjoyed birdwatching and relished participating in the Audubon Great Backyard Bird Count each year.
Ginny joined the board of directors for the McFarland Historical Society in the 1980’s and again after retirement. Ginny was a very active promoter of the Larson House Museum where she worked on restoration projects, named the gardens for Stanley who died in 2009, and served as chair of the Garden Committee. Ginny moved to Skaalen Village in 2010 where she enjoyed playing bridge and mahjong, and renewing friendships, and creating new ones. Ginny’s top priority was visiting grandchildren Kate and Henry and their parents in Connecticut. Ginny loved to cook with her grandchildren and share her joy of baking.
Ginny is preceded in death by her parents and husband. She leaves behind her brother John Arthur Joseph III, her daughter Sarah (Dodson) Wilson, son-in-law Ian Wilson, granddaughter Kate Lorraine Wilson and grandson Henry August Wilson.
Memorial services will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, October 9, 2021 at McFarland Lutheran Church, 5529 Marsh Road, with Rev. Tim Dean officiating. Live streaming of the service will take place on the McFarland Lutheran Church facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/McFarlandLutheranChurch. Burial will follow in Lower McFarland Cemetery. Friends may greet the family from 10:00 AM until the time of services Saturday at church. Memorials may be made to: The Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory (via website) or at PO Box 519, Crested Butte, CO 81224, The Cornell Lab of Ornithology (via website) or at 159 Sapsucker Woods Rd., Ithaca, NY 14850, or the McFarland Historical Society, P.O. Box 94, McFarland WI 53558.
Please share your memories of Ginny by posting on her Tribute Wall.
Cress Funeral Service
5801 Highway 51, PO Box 105, McFarland