Dawn Luann Morton (nee Leader) passed away on December 21, 2019 in Stanwood, Wash., at the age of 79.
Dawn was born to George Alfred (Al) and Alice Leader on October 31, 1940 in Seattle, Wash. She was the youngest of the family and adored her siblings, Albert (Bunny), Ruth and Ray. Her immediate family preceded her in death.
Dawn leaves behind her 3 children, Scott Gillespie (Traci) in Peoria, Ariz., Laurie Foster (Rick) in Stanwood, and Julie Gillespie in Ephrata, Wash. She has six grandchildren, Zachariah (deceased), Zahra, and Zane Gillespie, Anna and Boden Foster, and Alisha LeBarron; one great-grandson, Finley Hector; and an extended family of nieces, nephews, and cousins who were all dear to her, too.
Dawn grew up in Seattle, graduated from Queen Anne High School in 1958 and from the University of Washington in 1962 with a degree in Elementary Education. She was a Seafair Princess in 1958 and 1959 and a member of the Chi Omega sorority house at the University of Washington.
In July 1963, Dawn married Alan James Gillespie (deceased). She worked as a teacher for only a few years until they started a family in the Shoreline area in 1965. She became a full-time Mom but also managed the books for Alan's construction business and later the family marina on Lake Union.
Dawn loved being a Mom and was very involved in all of her kid's activities as coach, team-mom, Girl Scout troop leader and chauffeur to every practice and lesson. She never missed a game, recital, concert or event. She was our biggest, and usually loudest, fan.
Dawn was in her element when she was organizing trips, family reunions, holiday gatherings and special events; she made each one memorable. Many family trips were taken with the Wiley family; Robert, Kay, Beth and Teresa. Dawn and Kay were sorority sisters and remained very close after college, naming each other god-parents of their children
Dawn was also active in church, remained connected to friends from high school and Chi-Omega sorority and decided to start playing soccer herself in her 40's.
Dawn and Alan divorced in 1990. She stayed in the Shoreline area and worked for Gene Juarez Salons in their corporate office.
In May, 2004, she married Eugene (Gene) Morton (deceased); they spent 10 years together living in North Seattle and then Warm Beach Camp in Stanwood. Dawn and Gene traveled the US and Canada in their motor home to visit family and friends and when they were home, they were active volunteers at Warm Beach Camp and at Shoreline Free Methodist Church.
Family and friends were very important to her; she never passed up a chance to see the people she loved. She enjoyed celebrating the holidays (especially Halloween!), special occasions, traveling, cooking, baking, knitting, quilting and playing all kinds of games. There were usually not enough hours in the day for all she wanted to do.
Dawn was diagnosed with dementia in 2013. She was a wonderful, devoted and supportive Mom and Grandma and we will miss her greatly.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Alzheimer's Association.