Joan “Dodie” Andrews, beloved Wife, Mother, Grandmother and Great Grandmother passed into heaven with her devoted family by her side on the morning of February 1, 2024 after tiring from her decades long journey defying cancer. Dodie was a dynamic and energetic person who did not let cancer define or limit her love of life. She embraced her personal and professional life with enormous passion and generously shared her love, heart and soul with everyone she encountered. In return, Dodie (she used her formal first name “Joan” in her professional life) was deeply loved, cherished, respected and admired by her family, friends, colleagues and clients who will always hold her goodness, spirit and wisdom in their hearts.
Dodie was born on April 6, 1939 in Los Angeles, California to Eugene and Myrtle (Pat) McMurray. She was a lifelong So Cal resident growing up in Glendale. Dodie was a top student and leader in school and was voted the outstanding member of her Hoover High School graduating class of 1957. She attended San Jose State University to be with her high school sweetheart and future husband, Dave, who she married in 1959, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1961 with a degree in elementary education. They moved to Gardena where Dodie taught in the Hawthorne Elementary School District. She had their three children in the following years and earned a master's degree in Marriage, Family and Child Counseling at Long Beach State University. The family had since moved to Tustin where Dodie began pursuing her professional career as an educational psychologist working in the Irvine School District. In the early 1980’s, she started her own private practice as owner of Coastline Counseling Center in Newport Beach. Dodie was a pioneer in child and adult ADHD and authored books and articles on the subject while lecturing throughout the United States. She was widely respected as an innovative and highly effective psychologist with a tireless work ethic. She even had a radio show! She was also a very successful small business owner at a time when women were just making inroads into the professional workforce. Over the next 30 years and well into retirement, Dodie helped numerous children, adults and families navigate their most difficult times. She had a remarkable ability to see the good in people. She made you feel noticed, listed to and valued, and then would gently guide you towards your best possible self. There was no greater treasure than her sage advice and her warm reassurance that everything was going to be alright. Dodie lived her retirement in Camarillo as a professional grandma and was very involved in the Friends of Camarillo Dog Parks and the Ventura County China Painting Group.
Dodie had a zest for life which she channeled freely into her family, animals and hobbies. She was capable of anything and excelled at everything. She instigated more shenanigans than can be counted and had a great sense of humor. She loved hosting family parties, was a gourmet chef and baker, and designed and decorated everything from birthday cakes to homes to boats. She explored the world with her family, hiking, ziplining, boating, fishing and kayaking around the globe. She loved roller coasters, a good poker game and loved to read. She enjoyed playing the piano, attending musicals in Hollywood and never missed the Rose Parade. She was a masterful china painter surrounding us with stunning pieces that showcased her incredible talent. She had a deep bond with animals, was a beautiful dressage rider, and won many championships in agility with her beloved dog Bastogne.
Dodie leaves behind her loving husband Dave, who she was married to for 65 years, her adoring family: daughter Susan and grandsons Max (Alina) and great-granddaughter Evangelina Casillas, Mario (Kristen) and great-grandson Brycen Casillas, daughter Dina and granddaughter Marina Cleavenger, son David and grandsons Zachary, Nathan, Michael and Jacob Andrews, and her beloved, self-appointed service dog, Tavish. She will be profoundly missed, but created an amazing legacy of warmth, kindness and a life well lived.
The family would like to extend our most heartfelt thanks to the amazing caregivers and staff from Comfort Keepers of Ventura County, to the staff, hospice nurses and caregivers at Pacific Coast Homecare and Buena Vista Hospice, to her amazing doctors: Dr. Christine Walsh, Dr. B.J. Rimel, Dr. Beth Karlan, Dr. Katrina Lyn, Dr. Elizabeth Whiteman and to all the nurses and staff at Cedars Sinai Medical Center that treated Dodie for so many years with the dignity and respect she richly deserved.
We invite you to join us in a Celebration of Life at the Little Church of the Flowers, Forest Lawn Glendale, Friday, February 23, 1:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to the Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute, Cedars Sinai Hospital, 8700 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048 or Best Friends Animal Rescue, 5001 Angel Canyon Road, Kanab, UT 84741.
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