James Vernis Dodson, 67, Topeka, passed away Saturday, March 20, 2021.
He was born July 15, 1953, in Topeka, Kansas, the son of Lee and Kathleen (O'Brien) Dodson. He attended Wanamaker Grade School, Jay Shideler Jr. High School, and graduated from Washburn Rural High School in 1971. Jim led the Washburn Rural Basketball team into several state championships. In 1977, he received a bachelor's of art degree from Washburn University.
In 1971, Jim was drafted in the 14th round by the New York Yankees. He played professional minor league baseball for the New York Yankees Organization, having played in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Johnson City, Tennessee until 1973. He also managed semi-professional baseball and girl’s fast-pitch softball for many years. He served in many capacities for the Topeka Baseball Federation as well.
Jim was an avid runner for many years and later walked every day, rain or shine. He was also a very talented artist. He particularly loved to draw and paint. He would always enjoy helping his daughters with art projects for school, which developed their love for creativity and art. He was lovingly known as "Pazum" by his daughters. Jim was an incredibly loving father, always there for his daughters and family with a listening ear. As he told his daughters, “I love you more than air and life itself.”
Jim grew up Catholic and attended Most Pure Heart of Mary Catholic Church, as well as other Catholic churches in the area.
On October 1, 1983, Jim married Mary A. Wege in St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Duluth, Kansas. In 1986, they moved to Carbondale where they lived until 2017.
Survivors include his wife, Mary; two daughters, Dorene Dodson, Kathleen Dodson, all of Topeka; three siblings, Kathleen Ellen Dodson Fick (Ret. Maj. Gen., USAF), Charlotte, NC; Dr. Richard Dodson (Alyssa), Murray, KY; and Steven Dodson (Dianne), Burlingame, KS; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Mary Lee Dodson in 2009.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 10am, Monday, March 29, 2021 at Most Pure Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 3601 SW 17th St, Topeka. Interment will follow at Carbondale Cemetery. Visitation will be 4-6pm Sunday, March 28 at Penwell-Gabel Funeral Home, 1321 SW 10th Ave, Topeka.
Memorial contributions may be made to NAMI Kansas, PO Box 675, Topeka, KS, 66601 or Mayo Clinic-Department of Development, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55905.
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