Dorothy Lillie OPOCENSKY
June 5, 1923 – November 14, 2020
Dorothy Lillie Opocensky (Vidlak) Dorothy was born in Swanton, Nebraska on June 5, 1923 and passed away in Sherwood, Oregon on November 14, 2020 at age 97. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edward Opocensky, and will be placed next to him in Willamette National Cemetery in Oregon. She is survived by her two sons, Chris and Gary, and her grandchildren, Travis, Anthony, Logan and Lillie. Dorothy was born to Stanley Vidlak and Lillie Bartos, along with three siblings, Betty, MaryAnn, and Stanley. They grew up in rural Nebraska, surviving the great depression, the dust bowl era, and World War II. They did not have running water in their house until Dorothy graduated high school. Dorothy and Ed met on a blind date and married in 1949. They moved to Effingham, Illinois where Ed began his career as Manager of the Chamber of Commerce. They adopted their son, Chris, in 1957 and moved to Fairbanks, Alaska. They lived in Alaska when it became a state in 1958. Ed and Dorothy moved to Pendleton, Oregon where Ed was very much involved in the Pendleton Round Up. In 1960 they adopted another son, Gary. During this time Ed was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. After moving to Portland, Oregon in 1968, Ed continued working, but it was becoming clear he would need more help as time passed. Dorothy began taking over many duties besides caring for the kids and the household. At times, she worked two or three jobs to support the family without slowing down on her other jobs. She was a book keeper and was exceptionally good at her job. She would often work her fulltime job at Metzger Water District, come home, and work side jobs well into the evening. As Ed’s condition worsened, she added full time care giver to her list of responsibilities and kept this up for many years. When Ed had to go into a convalescent home, Dorothy visited him twice every day until his death. Dorothy was fiercely independent. When she finally moved into an assisted living facility, she found friends who were also looking for adventure. Dorothy was a basketball fan and, at the age of 92, she and her girlfriends organized a trip to a Blazer game. They arranged transportation to the arena, used their walkers to navigate the parking lot and found their way to their seats, then back home. Dorothy was an incredibly loving and caring mother to her two sons and supported them throughout her life in many ways. She adored her grandchildren and was considered the best mother-in-law in the world by her daughter-in-law. She was always doing what she could for others. Dorothy touched many people she met. She was loved by her family and will be very much missed. In Lieu of flowers please contribute to the Multiple Sclerosis Society.