Rosemary Wood Dodd
August 13, 1935-March 29, 2023
A bright and colorful light was extinguished March 29, 2023, with the passing of Rosemary Wood Dodd, 87.
Known for her bold colors in her paintings as well as her trademark multi-colored hair, she was celebrated for her creativity, a lover of all things Gainesville, a master story teller and a wicked sense of humor.
Born in Gainesville as the daughter of Jimmy and Jessie Whiddon Wood, she was an only child, but she created a family of worldwide friends that knew no boundaries. A proud graduate of Gainesville High School, she graduated Magna Cum Laude from Piedmont College (now University).
She had many claims to fame, including working in tandem with Ed Cabell, former head of the fine arts division, Gainesville College, to create the Gainesville Theater Alliance, a joint endeavor by Gainesville College and Brenau University that became a nationally acclaimed theater program. She served as Executive Director of the Gainesville College Foundation.
She was preceded in death by her daughter Holly, and husband, Ed Dodd. She served as the Executive Director of the Ed Dodd/Mark Trail Foundation that became a part of Elachee Nature and Science Center, where she served as a co-founder of the organization. She was also a co-founder of the Gainesville Ballet, Children’s Theater and the North Georgia Community Foundation. She was instrumental in the founding of Lakeview Academy where she established and chaired the first Lakeview Auction now in its 50 th year. Her board participation was numerous including the Northeast Georgia History Center, Quinlan Art Museum, The Arts Council, Gainesville Junior Service League, Gainesville Ballet, Georgia Alliance for the Arts, Elachee, Piedmont College Alumni Board. She served on every key committee that would enhance the community she loved. A prolific artist whose works grace many homes throughout North Georgia, she was instrumental in establishing the Blue Angel Gallery where she painted with fellow artists. She received numerous awards including Rotary’s Woman of the Year, the Girl Scouts Woman of Distinction, The Arts Council Friend of the Arts, Quinlan’s Medallion, three fellowships from Hambidge Center for Creative Arts & Sciences, College Alumni Award; Gainesville College Theater Service Award Piedmont; Northeast Georgia History Center Volunteer Award. She was especially honored to receive the National DAR American Heritage Women in the Arts Award. She was a 65-year member of DAR.
Survivors include her two daughters: Honey Secunda, Daytona Beach, FL, Jessie (David) Carmon, Gainesville, GA., son: Randy Johnston, Sterling, VA; grandchildren: Hannah Goza (Evan), Marietta, GA, Evan Secunda (Amanda), Gainesville, GA, Jimbo Secunda, Daytona Beach, FL, Nora Johnston, Sterling, VA; great grandchildren: Parker Lauren Goza, Marietta, GA, Reeves Ross Secunda, Rhodes Rand Secunda, both of Gainesville, GA. Special friends: Dean Adams and Julia Cromartie, both of Gainesville, GA.
An active member of Grace Episcopal Church, her celebration of life will be held there on April 1, 2023, at 1:00pm followed by a reception in the church Parish Hall. Visitation will be held at Little-Davenport Funeral Home on Friday, March 31, 2023, from 4pm-7pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Grace Episcopal Church.
The family expresses their gratitude to Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center, the caring staff at The Phoenix, as well as all other caregivers. Special thanks to Nicole Lewis who was her caregiver, confidant, partner in mischief and a friend. Rosemary’s words: “you made this journey perfect.”
Those wishing to send online condolences to the family may do so at littledavenport.com
Little & Davenport Funeral Home and Crematory, 355 Dawsonville Highway, SW, Gainesville, Georgia 30501 is in charge of arrangements.
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