RUTH DORMALEE HJELMEIR
Grants Pass/Rogue River artist Ruth Dormalee “Lee” Hjelmeir, 87, died peacefully at her home on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2007.
A private family service will be held at Eagle Point Cemetery in celebration of Lee’s life.
Born on Sept. 10, 1919 in Minneapolis, MN to Gustan & Anna Wegner. After graduating from high school Lee worked as a seamstress in Minneapolis, and also in a foundry during World War II. She met the love of her life “Pete” while riding the trolley to work, and enjoyed a loving marriage that would span the next 61 years. They moved to Kodiak, Alaska where Pete became a commercial fisherman, and Lee experienced inspirations, which lead to several pieces of her artwork. Lee perfected her craft over six decades. She became a magnificent sketch artist who utilized charcoals and slices of a white rock called Howlite, which she transformed into beautiful sketches of people, nature scenes, animals, and Artic life.
The family lived in Woodland Hills, CA for 15 years, and moved to Rogue River in 1971.
Lee loved to bowl, and was active well into her 80’s. She loved the people she bowled with, and loved the competition. She received many trophies as an individual, and with teams she played with.
She was a member of the Woodville Art Association in Rogue River, Rogue Valley Gem & Mineral Club, Roxy Ann Gem & Mineral Club in Medford, and the Alaska Rock Club.
Her husband Pete, her four children, Jan Berry of Santee, CA; Danny Hjelmeir of Seattle, WA; Rio Hjelmeir of Wolf Creek, Oregon; Merrilee Hjelmeir of Grants Pass, and eight grandchildren survive Lee, and will greatly miss her.