Article Contributed by
Dottie Maitland CTP
This Bill’s fan knows the players, their positions, the game plan and the schedule. She is a sharp sports fan. The wow factor! Her age. Dorothy Valone Snitger, is celebrating her 105-year birthday. This Jamestown resident,with a well-known marvelous professional voice, sang opera and continued her vocal gift to the community by singing in churches in Jamestown.
Dorothy’s story began in Jamestown. She was the daughter of a well-known prominent doctor, Dr James F Valone. Her mother, a graduate nurse from Warren General. Together they provided Dorothy and her brother James a comfortable home. Recently discovered old pictures reveal Dorothy as a child dressed in attire that a child would appear in Ladies Home Journal pictures. Her little black shoes stood out with nylon stockings. But No! Dorothy stated they were not nylons. All silk was used during the war for parachutes and tactical gear. She recalls the War time with the darkening curtains required in each household. The evenings were spent in the dark listening to classical music. Of course, there was no TV. The love of music was embedded when she was r4 years old and music has continued to be a very important part of her life.
Fashion was essential. Dorothy embraced this from an early age. She says the men wore suits, ties, trousers always. She giggles when she relates that her father and uncles were always dressed in this attire. Women wore dresses and skirts and blouses and the jewelry of their choice pearls, that have lasted thru time.
Dorothy’s love for sports began with annual family vacations in Florida near baseball spring training camps. She was a baseball fan.
During a Florida vacation her parents were invited to dinner to celebrate a visit from their nephew, a US Army soldier. Dorothy was seated next to him. Bob was attracted to Dorothy and thru correspondence that followed their relationship grew. Bob was discharged from the service and a wedding followed. Dorothy was 36 and Bob 50. They were married in Jamestown at the Methodist Church on September 3rd. 1955. ) Bob was involved in the candy industry and the timing of the wedding would not allow them a honeymoon. They left immediately for Philadelphia where he was employed. Bob had found Dorothy a beautiful apartment just outside Philadelphia. Dorothy said it was so much more than she had envisioned and loved it. The shops, movie theaters and everything you dreamed of were below the apartment. It was a fun time of her life.
Dorothy’s musical career had been put on hold. Education for Dorothy took place in Jamestown schools which she names all of them and graduation was Jamestown High School. She went to college for music that included composing, playing the piano etc. It was in college her magnificent voice was discovered. A picture supporting one of her performances was Faust She sang the Jewel song from Faust. Her favorite opera of all time was Carmen. After Bob died, she returned to Jamestown and her singing as a gift to the community continued.
Later in life Dorothy traveled with friends to many countries. Her favorite was Australia. She said she easily could have lived there. She remained active in the community and supported many organizations as she continues to this day. She is aware of all current events and probably is more knowledge than many residents in the country. Her photographs thru the years present a classy, sophisticated, intelligent woman. But they do not capture that beautiful smile that lights up a room nor do they show that twinkle in her eyes when she states the Red Sox scores or the latest performance of Josh Allen.
Keep that go, Dorothy. You have batted it out of the park for 105 years. Happy Birthday.