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Dolores (Dee), born on her mother's 17th birthday, was a birthday present and life-long gift to her family and friends. The oldest of seven siblings, she helped raise her brothers and sisters during the Great Depression, learning how to cook on a wood-fired stove, ironing and cleaning the house by the age of five while her mother and father worked on their Walla Walla truck farm, raising sweet onions, carrots, and spinach. Born into poverty, new clothes were a rarity, consisting of hand-sewn donations from a local charity. She often missed school to care for family members and felt humiliated when she overheard her teachers talking about her difficult family life. Still, the difficult circumstances helped her become a strong and caring woman determined to create a better life for her family. Indeed, she lived the American Dream and ensured her children did as well.
The first member of her family to graduate from high school, she went to work for the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company as a switchboard operator. During this time, she agreed to go on a blind date and met her future husband, Charles "Chuck" M. Lund. Unimpressed at first by the (almost) bald young man who knocked on her door, his charisma and worldliness–along with four years of long-distance dating while he attended college–convinced her that he was "the one." They married in October, 1955, and children quickly followed, with Mary Ann, born in 1956, Eric in 1958, and Michael in 1963.
Dee thought she would live the rest of her life in Pasco, Washington, where Chuck took a job with Sears. Life consisted of work during the week and visiting her family in Walla Walla every weekend. Married life, however, soon found her moving from one town to another as Chuck took a job with the federal government. They were transferred regularly from one duty station to another, including a long stint in Spokane from 1964 to 1972. She hated the moves! Even so, each was executed perfectly with as little disruption to the children's lives as possible. Her dream of living in one place for a long time finally came true when they moved back to Spokane in 1994 to be close to grandchildren. She was everything one would expect from an Italian grandmother.
Dee inherited her father's skill at math, and returned to work in the early '70's as a bank teller in order to pay her children's college tuition. She enjoyed the work well enough to spend the next 20 years working in banks, long after all three had earned degrees.
Returning to Spokane in the '90s allowed her to reconnect with old friends, including her Beta Sigma Phi "sisters." She served a number of roles within the sorority and felt especially honored the year she was named "Woman of the Year" for her chapter. Prior to the Covid-19 years, Dee was also active in the St. Mary Catholic Parish, participating in a Bible Study group, Women at the Well, and the Loving Care Ministry.
Dee never stopped learning or trying new things. Terrified of water, she took swimming lessons as an adult and learned to float. Seeing how much fun the family had on the ski slopes, she took lessons in her forties so she could enjoy the bunny hill while the family skied the mountain. Expecting her life to be lived within the confines of Walla Walla County, she and Charles became world travelers, with three trips to Italy and Europe, and numerous trips to Mexico. Road trips across the US were a given, to visit relatives and the sights. It was a major disappointment when she could no longer drive across the state to visit her children in her 80s.
Dolores was predeceased by her beloved husband, Charles M. Lund, as well as her father, Mario Castoldi, mother Mary (Bottiani) Castoldi, sister Elaine Montgomery, and brothers Richard and Dennis Castoldi. Loved ones who will miss her presence in their lives include her children, Eric Lund, Michael Lund and Mary Ann (Kyle) Goodwin as well as grandchildren Anthony and Maddie Goodwin. She is also survived by two sisters, Beth Sheffield and Donna Shockey and a brother, Kenneth Castoldi.
Born of a restless and energetic body and mind, her body at least, is now at rest.
Published by Spokesman-Review on Aug. 28, 2022.