Master Sgt. Dorrie L. Hagan, 59, of Helena, formerly of Great Falls, died Tuesday, in an auto accident south of Great Falls. She was a retired federal civil service employee who also served as a financial management supervisor with the 219th RED HORSE Squadron, Montana Air National Guard.
Visitation will be at the O’Connor Funeral Home, Monday, Oct. 24, from 2 to 6 p.m. Her funeral will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the First United Methodist Church, followed by a reception at the church. Burial will be at 3 p.m. in Helena at the Montana State Veterans Cemetery at Fort Harrison. A reception will follow at the Fort Harrison Service Club. O’Connor Funeral Home is handling arrangements.
Doris “Dorrie” LaFaun Redd was born April 19, 1952, in Roundup, to Harry and Wanda (Bell) Redd. She spent her early years attending several schools as her father followed the oilfields of Montana. She began her elementary school career in Bynum, where she was taught by an award-winning teacher. She often spoke of her favorite teacher, Ira Perkins. From Bynum, she moved to Pendroy and from there to Choteau. Her junior-high years were spent at East Junior High in Great Falls. Her high school years were first in Missoula and then, as a junior, her parents moved to Big Sandy, where she graduated in 1969. It was there she met her husband of 39 years, Roger, and on May 6, 1972, they were married.
Dorrie and Roger had three children, Stephen (Patti) Hagan of Ulm, Stephanie (Randy) Annis and Stacie (Boo Landon) Hagan of Great Falls.
Dorrie worked for Global Communications in Great Falls and joined the Air National Guard in 1980 as a communications specialist. She later became a civil service employee with the Air National Guard in Great Falls as a supply specialist, eventually moving to Helena to continue her civilian career with the Army National Guard. Her civilian career included time as a logistics specialist, equipment management specialist, the state family programs director and a short stint as the sexual assault response coordinator. She retired from the civil service in July of this year.
Dorrie’s 31-year military career included several trips overseas — including Panama, Curacao, Korea and Saudi Arabia — in support of the missions of the 120th Fighter Wing. Her most cherished military service was with the 219th RED HORSE, her last duty assignment. With the “HORSE” she deployed to Tikrit and Mosul, Iraq, in 2005. Although she did not have to deploy due to her impending separation date, she re-enlisted so she could be with her fellow Horsemen. The Great Falls Tribune highlighted Dorrie in a “Grandma goes to war” article, remarking about a 53-year-old grandma, armed with an M-16, leaving her twin grandsons to go to Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Dorrie was a special person who touched many lives in her family and in her work. She always had time for others, often to her own sacrifice. She wrote the book on service before self. Yet, she never sought credit for her work, nor expected it. She would not accept “good enough” and taught her fellow airmen the same. From providing the right part for the right aircraft at the right time to 100 percent weapons accountability to providing the support of and service to all Montana military family members from all branches of the service, Dorrie was unequaled. Her work as the family programs director took her to all corners of the state and brought her great satisfaction knowing that she was helping military families, especially during their military member’s deployment. Many coworkers called her “Mom” as they came to trust her and seek her guidance and counsel. Although she had a tough outer shell, known to “call it like it is,” she was soft as a marshmallow inside with a heart as big as all outdoors.
Dorrie’s family often remarked that she was the “glue that held them together.” She was their repository for all family dates, such as birthdays, weddings, special events and dates of passing. She worked her family tree faithfully, even traveling to several states to do research and photograph grave markers of long lost relatives. For several years, with the help of her cousin Bill, she hosted the Redd Family Reunion in Helena, succeeding in bringing many family members together for the first time.
If you were to look at Dorrie’s life in a bottle you would see that the bottom third was her love and care for her immediate and extended family, the middle third was her love of the military and duty to country and the top third was her most recent focus, being with her eight grandchildren. Her children often remarked, “Mom, we want you to help us raise our kids just like you and Dad raised us.” With military retirement less than six months away, she put her grandchildren on the front burner and shifted into overdrive. It was not unusual to find her playing baseball, tag, checkers, cards or anything else the grandkids wanted. Camping with family and friends every summer was an especially enjoyable time for her and the grandkids. Every grandchild she left behind will share fond memories of Gramma or Grammy Dorrie. She did what she knew was right and lived her life without regret, a value she taught her children and her grandchildren alike.
She was a life member of the Enlisted Association of the National Guard of Montana and the United States as well as the Enlisted Association Auxiliary. She held many positions in the state association, attending national conferences as a delegate nearly every year since 1981. She was a member of the Women in Military Service for America, a Paid-Up-For-Life member of the American Legion (Post 2 — Helena), and a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (Post 10010 — East Helena). True to Dorrie’s life of selfless giving, her final gift to those she will never get a chance to meet was carried out as an organ donor.
Dorrie is survived by her husband and three children, and eight grandchildren: Preston, Wesley, Kale, Toren, McKinley, MaKylyn, Kade and Brock. She also leaves her brothers, Charles “Chuck” Redd of Valier, Richard “Rick” (Cheryl) Redd of Powell, Wyo.; and sisters, Linda (Roger) Trantham of Albany, Ore., Bonnie (Rocky) Murrill of Wasilla, Alaska, Debby (Roger) Johnson of Battle Mountain, Nev., and Connie Hartgrove of Nampa, Idaho. In addition, she is survived by her stepmother, Lodi Redd of Dupuyer; three stepbrothers; and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by her father and mother.
Donations in her memory may be made to the Dorrie Hagan Memorial Fund, Russell Country Federal Credit Union, P.O. Box 2605, Great Falls, MT 50403.
Condolences may be posted online at www.oconnorfuneralhome.com.