Dorothea Elizabeth Cesmat, was called home by her heavenly Father and passed peacefully on February 28, 2021, just weeks before her 88th birthday. As she moved from her earthly body to her heavenly dwelling place, she was surrounded by her loving family. Dorothea was born to Peter and Frieda Laturnus on March 28, 1933. Since her parents only spoke German at home, Dorothea had to learn to speak English as she entered public school. She graduated from Franklin High School in 1950, continued her education at Central Washington College of Education and graduated from Virginia Mason Hospital Nursing School where she not only followed her career passion, but also made lifelong friends.
On a road trip with her college girlfriends, Dorothea came upon a hitchhiking sailor boy named Charles E. Cesmat who was making his way back to his ship located in Bremerton. Of all the girls on the trip, she won his heart. Charlie and Dorothea were married in 1955 and enjoyed an amazing life together as their family grew to seven children. Charlie and Dorothea were married for 64 years. They lived in Wenatchee for a couple years before settling in Seattle for the rest of their life together.
Dorothea was extremely family oriented and loving to her children, grandchildren and great grandchild. She was never one to just sit and relax but was always busy giving of herself. She worked tirelessly to make every birthday, holiday and family vacation special. Dorothea consistently helped with various projects for her adult children’s families and was always focused on planning fun and unique activities for all. Not only was she devoted to her immediate family but to extended family as well. She planned several family reunions from which many timeless and special memories were created. Our family will be forever grateful for the memories made on Whidbey Island at the beach cabin she and Charlie built through much sacrifice and hard work. This cabin became a special summer gathering place and favored vacation destination for her whole family.
As a member of Holy Rosary Parish for 60 years, Dorothea's faith was always very important to her and she lived out her faith in all she did. She was an active volunteer and was always self-sacrificing. Some areas she was involved in were teaching baptism classes, mentoring new church members, working in the soup kitchen ministry, delivering bread donations from grocery stores to a men's shelter and chaperoning overnights at the women's shelter. In addition, Dorothea was involved in sponsoring a very special Vietnamese family which became like family to her. Dorothea had a passion and love to support those with mental health needs and was a faithful volunteer with the National Alliance of the Mentally Ill. She planned and facilitated an annual Christmas party for over 25 years for patients at a Mental Health Center. Dorothea was an amazing example of how to spread God’s love by humbly giving of herself to others.
Dorothea also worked various jobs. She was a nurse, but then in keeping with the spirit of how important her children were to her, she took a job with Seattle Public Schools Food Service so her schedule mirrored her children’s schedule providing more quality time together. She kept her nursing credentials current and in her later years went back to nursing before retiring. Upon retiring, Dorothea thoroughly enjoyed growing in her faith as a participant of Bible Study Fellowship.
Sixteen years ago, Dorothea’s life as she knew it had a drastic change when a major stroke left her paralyzed and robbed her of the vast majority of her ability to speak. Even with her limited speech, those around her always knew she cared for and loved them. Many consistently commented on Dorothea’s genuine smile. With much loving care from her beloved husband Charlie and caring and committed daughter Julie, both providing life giving care, Dorothea was able to remain in the family home all the days of her life. Our family is forever grateful to Julie and other caregivers and friends who helped make this possible.
Dorothea was preceded in death by her beloved husband Charles in 2019 and her loving son Kenneth in 2020 as well as her parents, brother and sister. Surviving are her six children: Steven (Lana), Kathy (Gary) Porter, Paul (Becky), Walter, Julie, Martha (Duane) O'Loughlin; 17 grandchildren and 1 great-grandchild. She is also survived by her sister Gretchen Saupe, many special nieces and nephews, as well as many dear friends.
We invite you to share your special memories of Dorothea on the tribute page located above. At Dorothea’s request, we will be having a private family graveside service at Holyrood Cemetery on March 19th.
We welcome you to view a special slideshow at this link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1r3Z-sKSZRQNEYSWz5rcyeGRDXGWlFbGj/view
Please feel free to share the link with others that may enjoy remembering Dorothea.
Dorothea requested that as a replacement for flowers, donations could be sent to support mission work such as Daughters of Mary of Uganda. If you would like to support this orphanage in Uganda, financial contributions may be mailed and payable to:
Daughters of Mary of Uganda
3706 37th Ave. SW
Seattle, WA 98126
Dorothea also noted; “in lieu of flowers, remember your favorite charity.”
-Arrangements entrusted to Emmick Family Funeral Home of West Seattle-