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Clara "Madeline" Dornon

Madeline (nee Carlson Hiller) Dornon, 97, passed away Friday, March 14, 2014 at UW-Hospital in Madison, following a very short illness. She was born March 10, 1917, the daughter of Madeline (nee Winsor) and Frank Ivan Carlson.

Mrs. Dornon's early childhood years were spent in the Boston area and in 1923, the family moved to a farm on a lake in Northwood, New Hampshire. She attended a one room school for grades 1-8, graduating in six years at age 12. Madeline's lifelong love of books and reading was cemented during those years on the farm with bookcases of books, closets full of magazines, and long evenings perusing all manner of literature.

Following her father's untimely death in 1929, she and her mother returned to the Boston area then later moved to Pawtucket, Rhode Island, after her mother married William Hiller. Madeline attended business school at Bryant Statton and worked her way through Eastern Nazarene College by doing clerical work, graduating summa cum laude in 1941, with a BA in English literature. She married Clair Dornon in 1942, and they moved to Elyria. Both Madeline and Clair were employed at NACA, the forerunner of NASA. Following WWII, she stayed home to raise her four children. Later, she taught English at Elyria High School for 20 years. Madeline was a consummate Elyria Pioneers fan, rarely missing a basketball or football game! She retired from teaching in 1982 and enjoyed many years of traveling, doing volunteer activities, and teaching ESL. Madeline moved to Wisconsin in 1982 to be near her adult children. In later years, she enjoyed spending time with her granddaughters. Her's was a life well spent with family, friends, church activities, volunteer work, and pets.

Madeline is survived by her children, David (Nancy), Cathy and Paul; and her granddaughters, Mary Kate, Chrissy, Ann, and Betsy of Madison and Rose of Westlake.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; and son, Jonathan.

Arrangements are pending.

Online condolences may be made at

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