Hazel Carolina Dowling died on April 7, 2013 at Good Samaritan Village in Sioux Falls, South Dakota where she had been a resident since November of last year. She was 92. Prior to moving to Good Samaritan Village she resided for four years with her son and daughter-in-law, Michael and Barbara Dowling, in Sioux Falls. Hazel was born in Manilla, Iowa on July 17, 1920 to William and Carolina (Grimm) Grage, the eighth of nine children.
She graduated from high school in Manilla, Iowa where she excelled in basketball and twice competed in the Iowa State Girls Basketball Tournament. She was recognized in the 1938 Girls Basketball “All Iowa Roll of Honor”. Following high school, she attended American Institute of Business (now AIB Business College) in Des Moines, Iowa where she also played basketball.
She was married for 66 years to Albert Charles Dowling. They were married on March 25, 1943 in Geneva, New York. While Albert served overseas during World War II, Hazel enlisted in the United States Navy’s “Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service (WAVES)”. She received “boot camp” training at the Navy’s requisitioned facility at Hunter College in the borough of Bronx in New York City. As part of the WAVES’ “Singing Platoon” she appeared on radio shows in New York City and performed at Carnegie Hall. Following “boot camp” she served her country for the duration of the War at Hunter’s Point Naval Ship Yard in San Francisco, California where she worked as a stenographer for the Navy.
Following the surrender of Japan, Hazel and Albert lived for many years on a farm near Mitchell, South Dakota where they raised sons David and Michael. Hazel operated her own business, Mitchell Steno Service, and she worked for over twenty years for a civil and electrical engineering firm in Mitchell. She was a long-time dedicated member and activist of the national Business and Professional Women (BPW) and served as South Dakota State President of the BPW. As a volunteer she worked in support of service veterans while an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary. She enjoyed her involvement with the Mitchell Historical Society and volunteered her time with the YWCA.
Her many friends and family enjoyed her sense of humor which she retained through her final days.
She was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and seven siblings. She is survived by her sister, Helen Keetle (Ashland, Nebraska); by her son Dave Dowling and wife Geneie (Belleville, Illinois) and grand-daughters Sarah and Kaitlyn; son Michael Dowling and wife Barbara (Sioux Falls, South Dakota), grand-daughter Megan and great grand-daughter, Madeline; grand-daughter Leah Davis and son-in-law Blake; and many nieces and nephews.
A Memorial Service and interment will be in Servicemen’s Memorial Cemetery in Mitchell at a later date. Arrangements are with the Bittner Funeral Chapel in Mitchell.