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Dormah Marie Woodhams

July 19, 1926 ~ January 19, 2018 (age 91)

Dormah Marie Woodhams, 91, of South Haven, passed away peacefully Friday, January 19, 2018, at the River Ridge Retirement Community in South Haven. She was born July 19, 1926, to Taylor and Vivian (Quisenberry) Gingery in Hicksville, Ohio. She moved to Detroit and then Kalamazoo. She graduated from Kalamazoo Central, where she played drums in the High School band. After high school, while working at Upjohn in Kalamazoo, a fellow employee started a flying club that she joined, learning to fly at Austin Lake Airport. She met her future soulmate as one of her instructors who seemed to always have “the only seat available” when the group went on aviation outings. She married that pilot, Donald Woodhams, on June 13, 1948 at the First Methodist Church in Kalamazoo, and over nearly 70 years, shared hundreds of hours in the airplane’s right seat. Dormah left Upjohn to be the consummate housewife. She was always involved in her church, raised her children with guidance, was a Cub Scout Den Mother, a member of the Eastern Star, a hospital auxiliary pink lady, and a volunteer over and over again. She loved time with her children, grandchildren, and with Don and their friends in Florida. Whether flying to breakfast with friends, enjoying the Naples Antique Car Club, attending airport “board” meetings, or watching sunsets over the Gulf while holding hands with Don, Dormah was ever a lady, polite and kind to all.


She is preceded in death by her husband and best friend, Donald, her parents Taylor and Vivian Gingery and an uncle, who was more like a brother, Nathy Green.


Dormah is survived by her children Ross (Debbie) and Mark (Michele) Woodhams, all of South Haven, grandchildren - Jonathon (Katie) and Christopher of South Haven, Haley (Bill) of Coloma, Anna (Edward) of Hartford, and three great grandchildren - Rhonin, Roy, and Kaelyn.


Visitation will be held from 11:00 AM to Noon on Saturday, January 27, 2018 at the First United Methodist Church of South Haven, services following with Pastor Virginia Heller officiating. Dormah will be laid to rest with Donald at Lakeview Cemetery in South Haven. Contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church of South Haven and the Michigan Maritime Museum.

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