MORTON – Dorothy M. Melton, 85, of Morton, was welcomed into the arms of Jesus on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, after living a life full of love and adventure.
Dorothy was born on October 18, 1934, in Clearwater, Mo., to Herbert and Esther (Ferrell) Holland. At the age of 15, she left her family to seek a new beginning in St. Louis, Mo. Her first job was at Walgreens, where she met the love of her life, Ernest “Ernie” Melton, and after 3 short months of courting, they were married on August 5, 1951. Ernie shared her sense of adventure, and together they moved to Morton, Ill., started a restaurant business, Ernie’s Family Restaurant in Pekin, Ill., and raised a family of five children.
Although their adventure together was cut short with Ernie passing away on November 4, 1994, Dorothy continued to share their passion for travel by taking her entire family on 7 cruises. Her favorite trip was to Alaska. In addition to traveling, she worked for Kroger for 26 years and owned and operated Ernie’s Family Restaurant for 25 years, selling the restaurant in October 2009.
Family was very important to Dorothy, and she loved hosting backyard cookouts, pool parties, and holiday events. Every Sunday, you would find her in her favorite pew at First Baptist Church, singing and encouraging her family to love God. She will always be remembered for her abundant generosity, love for Jesus and others, and sharp wit. There is no doubt she was welcomed to Heaven with the words, “Well done, thy good and faithful servant”.
Dorothy was preceded in death by her loving husband Ernie, her courageous son Douglas, and her great-granddaughter Kaylee Jo Melton. She is survived by her daughter, Karen (Dale) Hoyle of Pekin; and three sons, Steven (Cindy) Melton of Morton, David (Lena) Melton of Charlotte, N.C., and Richard Melton of Collinsville, Ill.; daughter-in-law, Althea Melton of Congerville; 11 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandson.
Her funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 11, 2020, at First Baptist Church in Morton, Ill. Visitation will take place at the church from 9 to 10:15 a.m., prior to the service. Social distancing guidelines will be observed during the visitation and funeral service and masks are recommended.
Burial will be in Roberts Cemetery in Morton.
Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church or Arthritis Foundation.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dorothy M. Melton, please visit our floral store.