Charles M. ‘Speedy’ Dawson

| July 15, 2020 1:00 AM

Charles M. “Speedy” passed away of diabetic and heart disease complications on Saturday, March 14, 2020, at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane, Washington, with his youngest daughter Ginnie by his side.

His larger-than-life smile brightened our world when he was born on July 25, 1945, in Bakersfield, Californi,a to Gus C. and Edith M. and only brother, James Calvin Dawson.

When he was around 3 years old, the family moved to Inyo County, Bishop, California, where he attended all of his school years and graduated from Bishop Union High School in June 1965.

Speedy was soon drafted into the U.S. Army and began his tour of Vietnam on Nov. 9, 1965. Speedy was wounded in action and was awarded a Purple Heart among other medals and accommodations.

He returned to Bishop after being discharged on Nov. 8, 1967, where he met his bride of almost 50 years, Loralee Nisbeth, when he inquired about her hat-making skills. They married on Feb. 13, 1971, one of the only days he didn’t wear one of her hand-made hats.

Together they made their home in Bishop and started their family having two daughters, Carrie, born September 1973, and Ginnie, born May 1977.

Speedy worked as a miner, welder, garbage truck driver, newspaper printer and rancher during his time in Bishop — an all-around Jack of all trades!

In August 1984, the family moved to Gardnerville, Nevada, where he started working for Bently Nevada Corp. in the maintenance department. He enjoyed using his many talents in all areas for Bentleys.

Speedy enjoyed people. He cared deeply for his “Girls,” family, friends, and animals. He was very involved in all aspects of their lives, from coaching their softball teams, volunteering in their FFA chapter, caring for and teaching them how to raise rabbits and pigs. All the while still making sure dinner was on the table at 5 p.m. sharp for mom.

In 1994, Speedy and Loralee moved away to Priest River, Idaho, where he drove log truck for a short time before landing another maintenance job with the city of Priest River. It was a social butterfly’s dream!

Speedy didn’t know a stranger and he most likely knew you before you knew him. His water meter reading days were a highlight of his. That bright warm smile huge heart and pocket full of dog treats came in handy once again. He loved everyone, even caring enough to make sure the neighborhood kids had large snow piles to sled on after he plowed the streets. Speedy finally retired in July 2010, but that did not slow him down. He was always at the ready to help anyone. Anything you may need, he probably had three of. Whether it was giving you the keys to his truck to go sightseeing, to giving you one of his many hats because you commented about it in the grocery store, nothing was off limits and it was soon yours! He also enjoyed other hobbies like hunting and fishing with his friends, watching his grandkids’ sports and volunteering at their schools for field trips.

Speedy is survived by his wife, Loralee Dawson; daughter Carrie (Todd) Alderson, and grandkids Adam, Kelli, Billy, Hunter, Maeleigh and Mikey; and daughter Ginnie (Dale) Dawson, grandkids Cody, Corean, Carlin and Charles; and great-grandkids Fern, Adaleigh, Waylon and Lacie.

Speedy is preceded in death by his parents, Gus Calvin in 1985 and Edith Mae in 1986; brother James Calvin in 1957; and niece Vickie Sue Pittman 2008.

Speedy’s celebration of life will be held Saturday July 25, 2020 starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Priest River Evergreen Cemetery for military honors and immediately following at the Priest River Event Center 10 a.m. -2 p.m. Please come gather with us and share a favorite story of yours during the potluck gathering. Main dish hosted by Speedy’s family and friends. Please call 208-946- 6529 for any questions, hotel accommodations, or directions.

Sherman-Campbell Funeral and Cremation Services in Newport, Wash., is in charge of arrangements. Family and friends are invited to sign the online guest book at shermancampbell.com.