Arlene  Dorn

Obituary of Arlene Marie Dorn

In the early morning on June 21, 2023, the Summer Solstice, Arlene Marie Dorn, the much-loved matriarch of our family passed away at her home in Sun City, Arizona with her son Michael and granddaughter Rebekka by her side. It was just six days short of her 95th birthday. 


She was sweet and humble, with a bashful laugh that inspired joy. Family was everything to her and she was actively involved in everyone’s lives.


Arlene was born in Escanaba, Michigan on June 27, 1928, and raised in Bark River. As an adult she moved to Wisconsin with her family where she met her husband George, a dentist in Milwaukee. They set up their home in Elm Grove where they raised a son and two daughters. In the summer they vacationed in Door County, a place they would eventually live for the first part of their retirement.


Arlene was a student of art in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and creative in everything she pursued.  She had a multitude of interests including painting, ceramics, weaving, wood carving, quilting, scrapbooking, and especially jewelry making. Later, in Door County Wisconsin she was part of a community of friends who would gather to pursue these interests together. She was always learning new things and starting new projects right up until her final days.


Playing music on her piano was a passion close to her heart as was gardening for which she showed exceptional talent. She loved entertaining with family and friends, turning mealtimes into special occasions.


Her appreciation of nature and culture inspired her life-long desire to see the world through travel which she often did in the U.S. and abroad. She loved meeting up with her daughters and granddaughters for girls’ weekends in NYC, and gathering with the entire tribe in Southampton, New York every summer.


Family was at the heart of who she was, and she was the most significant person in all our lives. She was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother to us all and we feel blessed to have shared our lives with her. That is her legacy. We love her forever.

Arlene was predeceased by her husband George of 58 years and is survived by 3 children, son Michael and daughters Michele (Chuck O’Neil) and Mary Beth (Howard Staley), grandmother of 6, Christopher Dorn,  Rebekka (Terry Federer), Rachel (Anthony Buison), Angela (Daniel Neave), Emma (Riley Fenlon) and Kevin Staley, great-grandmother of 8, Alma, Finn, Billie, Levy, Mira, Rory, Murphy, and Remy.


In lieu of flowers, donations can be given in her name to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital at


Join us in celebrating her life on August 23, 2023, at 11:00 AM at St. Rosalia’s Catholic Church, 600 S. Bay Shore Dr. Sister Bay WI.


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Arlene Dorn, please visit Tribute Store
A Memorial Tree was planted for Arlene
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Regency Mortuary