Dorothy Jean Sherman Ramsey, who died on Wednesday, July 29, 2020, was a petite force of nature known for her infectious smile and compassionate spirit. Just over 5 feet tall and called “Dot” by her many friends, she was a loving wife, mother, bridge player, civic organizer, and booster of her beloved Goliad, where she made her home for more than 70 years. A Mayflower descendent, Dorothy was born to the late William Ambler Sherman and Goldie Wilkerson Sherman in Yale, Oklahoma.
She was preceded in death by the love of her life, Robert “Bobby” Howard Ramsey, Jr. (better known as “Lover”); her parents; and brothers, William Gerald Sherman and Robert Joseph Sherman; her in-laws, Robert Howard Ramsey, Sr. and Evelyn Seymour Ramsey of Goliad; and her sister-in-law and great friend Adair Ramsey Sutherland of San Antonio.
Dorothy’s father was an oil industry veteran who moved his family in the ’40s from Oklahoma to Victoria, Texas, where Dorothy attended Patti Welder High School. A popular student, she was also an enthusiastic cheerleader who loved to demonstrate her pep-rally jumping skills throughout her life. Many of the friendships forged while in Victoria remained close to the end of her life. After graduating high school, Dorothy attended junior college briefly, but soon married and became the mother of four daughters over a five-year span.
Dorothy and Bobby raised Shannon, Lisa, Roberta (Bo) and Tracey in Goliad. Family was extremely important to her, and the back porch of her historic home was often crowded with visitors. She would sit happily, with her beloved pup Zippy on her lap welcoming one and all to her inviting home. Always quick with a smile (lipstick carefully applied), and a twinkle in her eye, she was known as a great conversationalist. Friends said she never met a stranger.
The family’s second home in Port Aransas, where multiple generations of Ramseys enjoyed extended summer holidays, brought her tremendous happiness. After slathering her girls in sun lotion, Dorothy would happily make “tiny towns” in the sand with her daughters, seine for minnows, and make delicious “coquina soup,” all while creating unforgettable memories. Just as they did on the Goliad back porch, Dot and Bob greeted many old friends, while welcoming new friends at the rustic beach house (porch overlooking the Gulf) high on the hill at Marker 14. And, there was never a shortage of cold Lone Star Beer, as Bob, like his father, was one of Harry Jersig’s early Lone Star distributors.
Dorothy had the good fortune to have a dedicated and fiercely loyal group of “Bridge Club” ladies who spent many years playing cards while sipping crisp white wine. These ladies became each other’s safety net as they navigated life’s challenges together. She also had many other dear friends from Beeville, San Antonio, and beyond.
Dorothy always felt it was her responsibility to be active in civic affairs in Goliad County, while supporting her husband’s commitments as well — most notably his service to the Goliad High School Board of Directors and the San Antonio River Authority for more than 17 years. As the mother of four athletes who played every sport the public schools had to offer, she was a consummate bleacher cheerleader. Dorothy was also a traveler… She and Bobby would visit far flung destinations such as Russia, Egypt, as well as many European destinations. Plus, there were also many happy road trips to Mexico, Greece, Thailand, and Turkey with the girls in tow.
Her passions are also evident from her service to the Gulf Bend MHMR Center, where she served on the board of trustees for more than 21 years. Dorothy was recognized by Goliad’s mayor for her service to the Historic Preservation Board for “outstanding achievements in preserving the significance of the Goliad Downtown Historic District.” Dorothy also served as a member of the League of Women Voters of Texas and a loyal member of the Republican Party.
Other organizations that were near and dear to her heart are the Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, which honored Dorothy with a plaque for her “unselfish support and dedication.” The First Presbyterian Church of Goliad, where she served as an Elder for many years, was where her roots ran deep and were she gained strength throughout her life. This little church and its parish benefited gratefully from her love, generosity, and longtime support.
Dorothy is survived by her four daughters, and by her grandchildren, Ramsey Catherine Bennett, Hannah Ramsey Granberry, and James Robert Granberry. Dorothy is also survived by her nieces Lea Anzalotta, Lesly Sherman, Theri Jo Candella, Stacey Guillory and nephews Chad Sherman and Rob Sherman (deceased).
A celebration of Dot’s life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, friends and well-wishers may donate in Dorothy’s name to the Goliad Presbyterian Church or the Goliad Public Library at http://www.co.goliad.tx.us/page/goliad.library.
Many thanks to Joyce Jones, Sherry Myers, Michael Gray, Sylvia McCord, Mary Elizabeth Scott and Mary Jane Edison for their visits and support. Thanks also to all of Dorothy’s friends who called out of concern and love for her. The family wants to extend a heartfelt thanks to all the frontline doctors, nurses, and caregivers at DeTar Hospital and Twin Pines Nursing and Rehabilitation.
Friends are invited to visit Grace Funeral Home, 214 N. Market St., Goliad, on Sunday, August 2, from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. to sign the register book (Note: family will not be present). All are welcome to a celebratory graveside service to be happily held at Glendale Cemetery, 740 W. Ward Street on Monday, August 3, at 10 a.m.
Pallbearers are: Howard Sutherland, Ashby Sutherland, Ralph Ramsey Jr., Bill Barnhill, Michael Gray and Bill Zbieszkowski. The family would appreciate friends following Covid-19 protocols.
Thoughts and memories may be shared online at gracefuneralhome.net.
Services are under the personal care of Grace Funeral Home - Goliad.