By Adam Madison
Triplicate staff writer
Dorothy Ishoy will be this year's Grand Marshal for the Fourth of July parade.
"I was very surprised, I was just kind of shocked," said Ishoy, 87, of Crescent City, about her nomination.
Ishoy's late husband, Jan Ishoy was a building inspector, so his line of work brought them to the area.
"I cried when I first arrived here," Ishoy said about her move.
Ishoy retired in 1964. She began teaching art through the Del Norte County Schools "Art for School" program soon after retirement. She has lived here for 43 years.
"In high school I taught Sunday school as I kid," Ishoy said about her life-long love for teaching youth.
Ishoy currently teaches pastels and watercolor to the younger crowd on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. She teaches an adult watercolor class on Saturdays.
"Some of the kids that I teach are (now) adults," Ishoy said.
The classroom for Ishoy's art class is in the upstairs portion of the Crescent Harbor Art Gallery.
"They (her colleagues) can't climb the stairs, so they gave it to me," Ishoy said as she nearly jogged up the steps to the classroom.
When asked why she chose the upstairs room, Ishoy said with a smile and a wink, "The children can still climb the stairs."
Ishoy taught youth and was a leader in childhood education for many years before she even arrived in Crescent City.
"I was a den mother for my first son also," she said.
Ishoy taught kindergarten for 10 years in Riverside, then first grade for another 10 years at Smith River Elementary School before she retiring. Ishoy also was a 4-H Club leader for 15 years.
Such broad experience led to her nomination.
"When I saw what the theme was, I thought, Who do I know that has spent a lot of time giving to children," said Dorothy Pasch, a Crescent City resident who wrote a letter to the Chamber of Commerce nominating Ishoy.
Pasch wrote in her letter that "I can see how she looked through the eyes of a child.' ... Other teachers do it for pay, she does it for her love of art."
A nomination letter for Ishoy also was written by Betty Buck.
"I know how dedicated she is; she's so patient with them (her students), she's worked with kids her whole life," Buck said. "I think it's quite an honor, she deserves it."
Virginia Smith's also wrote a nomination letter saying of Ishoy, "She's an excellent artist herself, but also an artist at teaching art."