Obituary for Evelyn C. “Sandy” Dawson

Evelyn C. “Sandy” Dawson died peacefully on July 8, 2017 at Deerfield Ridge Assisted Living in Boone North Carolina. She had just celebrated her 87th birthday.

Her Memorial Service will be held on Sunday, July 16 at 1 PM at the First Presbyterian Church in Pulaski, Virginia. A reception will follow the service, after which there will be a private family gathering at Highland Memory Gardens for the internment of her ashes.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in her honor to the Emergency Needs Task Force of Pulaski County, Virginia or to Habitat for Humanity of the New River Valley.

Evelyn was born on July 3, 1930 in Newport News, Virginia, the only child of John Henry Robert Cardwell and Mattie Arlene Johnson Cardwell.

She graduated from Newport News High School and attended Radford College. On September 8, 1948, she married the love of her life, William “Bill” Dawson, Jr. They raised 4 children and for 20 years, she was a full time, stay at home Mom. Her family was always of the utmost importance and joy to her.

After returning to school, Evelyn received a Bachelor’s degree from UNC– G and began her teaching career in 1970. She taught sixth grade for three years in the North Carolina Public School System and for sixteen years at Dublin Middle School in the Virginia Public School System. It was in the classroom that she found her voice and made her greatest public contribution. In 1983, she was named the Pulaski County, Virginia Teacher of the Year, and was nominated for Virginia State Teacher of the Year, placing in the top four.

From 1973 until her death, she was a beloved and active member of First Presbyterian Church in Pulaski Virginia where she served as Sunday School Teacher, Youth Choir Director, Youth Club Director, Accompanist, Member of the Choir, Presbyterian Women’s Circle Chair Person, and Member of the Session.

She worked alongside her husband in community affairs and was an active member of numerous organizations, including the Nu Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma International Honor Society for Women Educators, Pulaski County Retired Teachers Organization, Presbyterian Women, the Pulaski County Democratic Party, The Round Dozen Club, The Red Hat Society, and The Southwest Virginia Harp Ensemble.

She was preceded in death by her husband of fifty-four years, William J. Dawson Jr. and by her daughter, Ann Dawson Ingham.

She is survived by her children, Kenneth Robert Dawson and his wife Libby Outlaw, Karen Dawson Fuller, and Carol Dawson Miller; by her grandchildren, David Allen and his wife Katy Allen, Spring Dawson-McClure and her husband Garen McClure, Sara Fuller Brown and her husband Joe Brown, Jessica Glenn Carrasco and her husband Cesar Carrasco, Rebecca Miller White and her husband Matthew White, Jennifer Sunshine Dawson, Benjamin William Ingham and his fiancé Elysse Yager, and Jonathan Robert Ingham; and by her nine great grandchildren Lucy Carrasco, Ian Miller, Gus McClure, Eli Miller, Lucas Carrasco, Hollis Brown, Zora McClure and Ellie Brown.

During her long life, her light brightened the days of so many. In the words of two of her granddaughters, “I will feel her open-hearted love and tenderness always,” and “We will sing her songs, repeat her sayings, and teach our children the values she instilled in us.”

Online condolences may be sent to the Dawson family at

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service, in Boone, NC,  is in charge of the arrangements.