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Evelyn Dockter
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Evelyn Lucille Dockter, 81, passed away Sunday, March 23 at a Modesto hospital following complications from cardiac surgery.

Born in Martinez, California on Jan. 11, 1927 to Joseph Ray and Clara Etta Rule, she spent her early youth in the Bay Area where her father worked for Shell Oil. The family later moved to Stockton where they owned and operated Rule's Grocery. She graduated from Stockton High School and attended College of the Pacific. Her brother, who was four years older, was killed in WWII when his plane was shot down over Germany.

She married Edward F. Bumgarner on Oct. 13, 1946. She was always active in the lives of her daughters from being a room mother to Girl Scout Leader to Rainbow Mother Advisor to taking them (and their horses) to weekly horse shows. During this marriage she lived in Stockton (where they built their first home with their own hands), Castro Valley, and Manteca (where they owned and operated Ed's Patio Drive-In and Evelyn's Ceramics).

Her second marriage was to Harold G. Dockter, of Escalon, on July 10, 1977. She began life anew and became a devoted farmer's wife, taking care of sick calves and helping with the rice harvest. After retirement, they traveled extensively together: all over the U.S. and Canada, as well as Great Britain and Europe. They made many friends across the country as they traveled in their motor home and were active in several motor home groups. She was a great friend and made weekly phone calls to friends and family all over the country and occasionally to cousins in Northern Ireland.

She was a strong family matriarch: you always knew where you stood with her as she was never one to hold back. She was a loving, caring wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She had a great sense of humor and loved to tease - especially with someone who would tease her back.

Mrs. Dockter enjoyed working with her hands and made beautiful pine needle baskets, knitted and crocheted, among other things. She cherished her collections of music boxes, china dolls, and tea cups.

She was a Lifetime Member of Soroptimist International of Manteca; the Escalon Historical Society; The Pentalpha Chapter #339, Order of the Eastern Star (Manteca), and St. John's Lutheran Church in Valley Home.

Survivors include her husband of over 30 years, Harold G. Dockter of Escalon; her daughters and their spouses, Kathy Seaton and Dodie Harte of Big Oak Flat, Claudia and John Weeks of Escalon, and Connie and Pete Dalla of Manteca; granddaughters Valarie Brady of Escalon, Jennifer Weeks and her fiancé Javier Esquivel of Escalon, and Heather Dalla of Monroe, Wisconsin; great-granddaughters Emily Weeks and Alexis Esquivel of Escalon.

She was preceded in death by her parents and her brother, Otis Eugene Rule.

Graveside service was Friday, March 28 at Burwood Cemetery, 28320 East River Road, Escalon.

Memorial contributions may be made to either Escalon Historical Society, 1630 Main St., Escalon, CA 95320, or St. John's Lutheran Church, 120 West Ave., Oakdale, CA 95361.

The Escalon (Calif.) Times

April 2, 2008