In the community

Obituary from the Enterprise, for the week of February 28, 2024: Donnaclaire Dawson Blankinship

Donnaclaire Dawson Blankinship

1934 – January 18, 2024

Surrounded by family, Donnaclaire Dawson Blankinship died peacefully in her sleep on Thursday, Jan. 18, 2024, at the age of 89.

Born in Boise in 1934, Donnaclaire was raised in Caldwell, Idaho. During her childhood Donnaclaire developed her love of animals, especially horses and dogs, and was an avid musician, playing piano and organ, and singing.

She left the Treasure Valley for the University of Oregon and Northwest Christian College in Eugene, where she met the love of her life, Bill. Together they had two children, a daughter deShauna and son Robb.

After college, Bill’s military career took Donnaclaire and Bill all over the United States, spending time in Oklahoma, California, Washington, and Georgia before settling back home in Caldwell. In Caldwell, Donnaclaire was an active community member, serving as president of Silver Sage Girl Scout Council, Worthy Matron of Hermosa No. 32 Order of the Eastern Star, and PTO president. She was also actively involved in the Caldwell Night Rodeo, supporting the families of the local National Guard Unit, and the local pageant circuit.

In 1977, Donnaclaire decided to return to school, completing her bachelor of arts in English at Boise State University. She began her career as an educator shortly after, teaching English and Humanities at Vale High School for 18 years. Donnaclaire was a remarkable educator and beloved mentor and maintained many fond relationships with students and their families throughout her life. During her time at Vale HS, she served as Head of the English Department, varsity tennis coach, and created lasting enrichment programs. She earned her Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction in 1986.

In retirement, Donnaclaire and Bill traveled all over the United States and Mexico. Donnaclaire was an active member of Daughters of the Nile and served as Queen of Iras Temple No. 40 before moving from the Treasure Valley to Portland, Oregon to be near her children and grandchildren.

Donnaclaire is survived by her loving husband and partner of over 70 years, Bill Blankinship. She is also survived by her daughter, deShauna Blankinship Jones, her son, Robb Blankinship and daughter-in-law Milessa Blankinship, her grandchildren, Lauren (Bryan) Wall, Johnny (Mary Kate) Jones, Camille Blankinship, Sydney (Courtney) Hammond, Jennah Blankinship, and Kylie Blankinship, four great grandchildren, and her beloved dog Coco.

Donnaclaire was preceded in death by her parents Bob and Marguerite Dawson, her brother Byron Crooke, and her pack of cherished dogs.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 9, at 10 a.m. at The Madeline in Northeast Portland. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a scholarship gift in memory of Donnaclaire Blankinship to Vale High School Alumni Association, PO Box 274, Vale, OR 97918.


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