Dorothy Wampler Landen (Dotty) passed away quietly on Saturday, September 12, 2020 at a local hospital after a sudden stroke. She was surrounded by family and attended to by their church pastor. Dotty was born March 16, 1937, in Harrisonburg, Va., the only surviving daughter of Joseph and Lucille Wampler. She was an alumnus of Harrisonburg High School, VA, and Meredith College, NC. She is preceded in death by her brother, James Wampler, DDS, in 2018.
Dotty married Walter J. Landen, Sr, then a Lieutenant in the US Navy in June 1969 and immediately adopted the battle cry of “Go Navy, Beat Army!” Together, Dotty and Walter moved multiple times over the years residing in Arlington, VA, Annapolis, MD, Mitchelville, MD, Keflavik, Iceland, Medford, NJ, Montoursville, PA, and finally Centennial, CO. Over the years, they built life-long friendships across the country, most of whom she kept up with by mail, email, and phone. She was a loyal pen-pal and voracious note-sender and magazine-article-clipper.
She raised three children in the Presbyterian Church and happily found choir homes at Covenant Central in Williamsport, PA, and Cherry Creek Presbyterian, Greenwood Village, CO. She was an incredibly talented piano player who loved to play at family parties and practice before Church. She could be goaded (by friends and family) to play at unattended baby grands in hotel lobbies or restaurants to the delight of everyone around. She had perfect pitch, and if you sang her a song, she could play it!
She taught elementary school off and on - 5th grade was her favorite - but also taught nursery school and substituted over the years. She was an educator at heart, always designing activities for her children and grandchildren that were fun and full of teachable moments. Her kitchen table saw family meals, family meetings, games, homework, and way too many art and science projects to mention.
She was a transporter of kids (hers and others) to ballet lessons, school dances, birthday parties, soccer games, sleepovers, and more. Dotty was a soccer mom before soccer moms were a thing. She attended hundreds of games between her children and grandsons, though never quite grasped the off-sides call.
Dotty was a reluctant camper, retired skier, willing boater, and avid beach walker. She was an antique collector, amateur interior designer, a patient gardener (there wasn’t a vegetable she didn’t enjoy), and lover of porch swings. She was a casserole-maker, puff-cookie baker, considerate gift-giver, and family dog-lover.
She was a creative, thoughtful, tender, and generous woman who wore a smile that lit up a room. She was magical. Dotty was dearly loved by her husband, children and grandchildren, and close friends. Dotty was a Virginian, a loving wife and mother, a grammy (and meme), and a child of God. She is survived by her husband of 51 years Walter J. Landen, Sr and children Walter J. Landen, Jr, Elizabeth L. Landen, and Joseph L. Landen, daughters-in-law Julie and Kimberly, and grandsons Noah, Will, and Asher, all of Denver, CO, and life-long friend and sister-she-never-had, Peninah Brown of Raleigh, NC.
There will be a private, family interment in September at Fairmount Cemetery. A celebration of life is being planned for a later date. In lieu of flowers, please make memorial contributions to the Denver Rescue Mission. https://denverrescuemission.org
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dorothy (Wampler) Landen, please visit our floral store.