Dorothy Pickett Ramsour
November 9, 1929 – April 14, 2018
SUMMERVILLE, S.C. – Dorothy Pickett Ramsour, 88, formerly of Hickory, N.C., an accomplished vocalist, former business owner, loving wife and mother, passed away Saturday at her daughter Kathy’s home here after a period of declining health. She was the widow of the late Harry Pickett and the late Mid Ramsour.
Born in Statesville, N.C, Dot was the only child of Mary Jane Tilghman and John Bost Leonard. When her mother died when Dot was only 6, she was raised by her loving aunt, Kate Tilghman Lindsey, in Durham, N.C. She spent summers in Hickory, N.C., with her father and stepmother, Virginia Kennady Leonard and stepbrother Bill Kennady. Following graduation from Durham High School, Dot attended Winthrop College in Rock Hill S.C. and Greensboro College on a voice scholarship.
Dot married Harry Pickett in 1950 in Durham, and soon thereafter the couple moved to Hickory. Dot became an active member of the Hickory community. With a lovely lyric soprano voice, Dot appeared with the Hickory Choral and Oratorio Society, sang for many functions in various venues, and played leading parts in the Hickory Community Theatre, as well as holding leadership roles in music clubs and events. In the early 1960s, Dot hosted a weekly radio show called “Dot’s Spot” on former WHKY Radio, where she sang semi- classical and Broadway show tunes along with accompanist and dear friend, Martha Bell. Around this time, Dot was invited to sing on various local television stations including Loonis McGlohon’s WBTV “Southern Hospitality”. In addition, Dot was a regular soloist at First United Methodist Church of Hickory, where she and Harry were members.
One of Dot’s most memorable achievements was performing as soloist for the Hickory Symphony (now the Western Piedmont Symphony). She sang selections from "Sound of Music," and her daughters remember the standing ovation she received at P.E. Monroe Auditorium.
Dot accomplished many of these activities while raising two daughters and running Castlewood Furnishings, an accessory and furniture business.
When Dot first became a widow in 1968, she immediately empathized with other single parents in the Hickory area and helped organize a local chapter of Parents Without Partners as well as the Zodiac Dance Club. As a leader of these groups, Dot organized many social activities at her eclectic home in Northwest Hickory. Dot was always the life of the party and enjoyed bringing people together.
In 1985, Dot married Mid Ramsour, and both were active at First Methodist Church. Dot and Mid shared 22 years together. The couple enjoyed traveling and enjoying time with Mid's adult children, Carol Ramsour Dickson and Paul Ramsour, and Dot's adult children, Kathy Hodge and Debbie Mills.
After her retirement from Castlewood, Dot became a passionate volunteer at Prison Ministries/Exodus Homes. She also delivered Meals on Wheels for many years.
Those who knew Dot well can attest to her spirit, bravado, and candor. Dot’s family and close friends always knew that Dot loved and cherished them. That love flowed like warm honey into the hearts of her two beautiful daughters: Kathy Pickett Hodge of Summerville and Debbie Pickett Mills of East Sandwich, Mass. The family is forever grateful for the round-the-clock care tenderly provided by Kathy and her family in her final years.
Besides her daughters, Dot leaves two sons-in-law, Donald Hodge of Summerville and William Mills of East Sandwich, Mass.; a stepdaughter, Carol Ramsour and her husband, Doug, of Hickory; a stepson, Paul Ramsour and his wife Nancy Loyd of Prior Lake, Minn.; eight grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.
A Memorial Service will be Wednesday, 11:00 at First United Methodist Church Chapel, with Rev. Paul Christy officiating. The family will receive after the service in the Community Hall of the church. Burial will be in Catawba Memorial Park and will be private. Memorials may be left to Exodus Homes/Prison Ministries of Hickory, Intrepid Hospice of Charleston SC, and First United Methodist Church, Hickory NC.
Condolences may be left at www.catawbamemorialpark.
The Ramsour Family is under the care of Catawba Memorial Park, Funerals & Cremations.
- Memorial Service Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Dorothy Pickett Ramsour
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April 20, 2018
In 1967, when I was at Hickory High School Dot and Harry opened their home and took me in. I worked for her at Castlewood where she shared a store with her father's Piano business. Dot would laugh as me (all of 110 lbs) and her 80 year old dad, Mr. John Leonard would load an upright piano into the back of his old pickup truck and take it to deliver to someone's home. With wooden rollers and a few tricks he knew we would get it done. Kathy and Debbie were just little girls. Harry mentored me and gave me life advice. He had served in the US Air Force and after he died in 1968, and I graduated Dot told me that I should join the Air Force. And, I did. I have thought of her and her generous love and family over the past 50 years. I am saddened by their loss and wish them well.
Intrepid Hospice Staff
April 18, 2018
Family of Ms. Ramsour,
Our thoughts and prayers are with each of you during this time of bereavement. May you all find comfort in many wonderful memories and remember the Great Comforter, our Lord Jesus Christ is there comforting each of you also. We thank you for allowing us the opportunity to help in the care of Ms. Dot as she touched our lives in which we will not forget. God bless you all.
Jan White Cantrell
April 18, 2018
My mom Bunny White and I send sympathy at the loss of your dear Mom. She had a zest for life.
We had a wonderful neighborhood to grow up in. Blessings, Jan