Dorothy Margaret Hayes Inskeep
Dorothy Margaret Hayes Inskeep, 84, died May 31, 2016, from complications of a stroke suffered two years earlier.
Born January 27, 1932, to Elliott Hayes and Ina Stilwell Hayes of Winthrop, Massachusetts, Dorothy was the eighth of their nine children and the last surviving member of her immediate family.
Growing up two blocks from the ocean, Dorothy loved it from the beginning. She learned to swim around the time she learned to walk. In her final illness, recordings of ocean sounds and pictures of beaches and the ocean often soothed her.
A voracious reader, young Dorothy read every book in the children’s section of the Winthrop Public Library. A note from her mother won her permission to request books from the adult stacks. She read widely as an adult and particularly enjoyed books on religious topics, social commentary, historical novels and mysteries, especially those of Dorothy L. Sayers. A paperback was always at the ready in her pocketbook.
Dorothy met her future husband, Keith L. Inskeep, on a blind double date when she was an undergraduate at Tufts University and he was a seminary student at Boston University. They married on June 16, 1953. He preceded her in death. Keith’s work as a Methodist minister and ecumenical church worker had them moving frequently. They lived in Vanceboro, Maine; communities near Ithaca and Elmira, New York; Boston; Pittsburgh; Merom, Indiana; Herscher and Gilman, Illinois; and Indianapolis.
Dorothy loved music. She was accomplished on the piano, playing for her own pleasure and as accompanist at church. She coached her children by calling out the correct note from the kitchen as they practiced piano in the next room. She worked crosswords in pen. Although an introvert by nature, with her family and close friends she enjoyed playing cards and board games, discussing ideas and current events, and laughing.
After two decades as a homemaker, mother, and minister’s wife, Dorothy returned to school, earning a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Illinois, Chicago Circle. She spent many satisfying years helping clients as a therapist.
Dorothy and her dear sisters, Ellen Hodgkins and Phyllis Myers, retired to Urbana. She was an active member of Unity Church. She won a senior volunteer of the year award for her work with the Presence (now Rainbow) Hospice, and for facilitating support groups for the bereaved. She had great sympathy for the underdog and the unconventional, supporting many progressive causes such as PFLAG and Amnesty International. Her deep understanding of human nature and her open heart touched the lives of many.
She is survived by her children Michael Inskeep (Lynne Piersol) of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania; David Inskeep of Kokomo, Indiana; Kenneth (Krisztina) Inskeep of Indianapolis; Carol Inskeep (Matthew Murrey III) of Urbana; Susan (Alex) Clark of Monmouth, Illinois; eleven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. A daughter, Janet Inskeep, died in infancy.
The family will hold a private memorial service.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., 123 William Street, New York, NY 10038 or the Urbana Free Library, 210 West Green Street, Urbana, Illinois 61801.
Condolences may be offered online at www.HeathandVaughn.com.
Dorothy was a friend and fellow member of ’S’More Faith’ small group. We especially shared being minister's wives and our love and support for the LGBT community. There will always be a warm spot in my heart from knowing Dorothy. Blessings to her family!