Dorothea “Dody” or “Aunt Doodie” Bemrick, 83, died July 3. She was a proud feminist and 40-year resident of St. Anthony Park, a member of the Park Choir, Bell Ringers, Friends of the Library and St. Anthony Park Garden Club.

She was an avid water colorist, calligrapher, wood-turner, clogger, repairer and collector of antique clocks, maker of fiddles and hammer dulcimers and World-Champion-Reader-of-Mystery-Books. With a degree in biology, she taught her children to respect all insects (housing a June bug in her kitchen every summer), excluding centipedes. She engaged in a decades-long war of wits with the squirrels, after which, having suffered numerous casualties on both sides, the squirrels emerged, victorious.

As a scientist working in Bill Bemrick’s lab, he thought that she was “the best dissector of mosquitoes” he’d ever seen, so he married her, despite that she came with five separate pieces of baggage: Anthony (“Quint”) Hankel, Matthew Hankel, Stephanie (Ottoson), Katie (Novak) and Theresa Hankel. They then added to the collection: Patrick (Bemrick).

A 1947 graduate of Minnesota’s first girls’ school, St. Joseph’s Academy, she was also a “Benny,” graduating in 1951 from the College of St. Benedict. A penny-pincher to the end, Bill deemed her “tighter than the bark on a tree.”

And as a parting note, we’re sure that Dody would like to say, “Die, buckthorn scum!!!”

A service was held July 10 at the Minneapolis Chapel of the Cremation Society of Minnesota.

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