Dorothy Ann Cahill


Dorothy Ann Cahill, age 97, of Vandalia, passed away at 5:55 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021, at Tri-County Care Center in Vandalia.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 2, at St. John's Lutheran Church in Vandalia. Pastor Kenneth Schamber will officiate. Burial will be in the Vandalia Cemetery following the service. Pallbearers will be Travis Miller, Paul Mascarenas, Ron Morris, Floyd Vogt, Ron Suddarth and Dale Fischer.

Visitation celebrating Dorothy's life will be held at 10 a.m. until the time of service Saturday, Oct. 2, at St. John's Lutheran Church.

Dorothy, or Dotty, as she was known by her friends, was born on Feb. 16, 1924, in Altona, Ill. the only child of Ralph and Anna (Forsberg) Failor.

She was united in marriage to Ernest Cahill, the love of her life, on Feb. 20, 1943, by the Rev. F. A. Melzer at Trinity Lutheran Parsonage, Cape Girardeau. As newlyweds they moved frequently as the Air Force moved them to different bases. Dotty loved traveling, seeing new places, meeting new friends and riding the troop trains. Ernest preceded her in death on Nov. 22, 2006.

She is also preceded in death by her parents; and her son, Spencer Cahill.

Survivors include her daughters and daughter-in-law, Anne Barnes (Danny), Donileen Loseke, Jane Cahill, Peggy Cahill (Dana Hayden); grandchildren, Amy Miller (Travis), Nancy Barnes (Paul Mascarenas), Adam Barnes (Kristen), Kyle Hayden, and Deidre Hayden (Casey Bodenhausen); and great-grandchildren, Ryan Miller, Anna Miller, Alex Barnes, Lauren Barnes, and Jaxson Trimm.

Dotty graduated from Walnut Grove Township High School in Altona, Ill. class of 1942. She was a member of the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Altona and in the Junior Missionary Society, Luther League and choir.

When Ernest returned from World War II, Dotty and Ernie settled in Woodhull, Ill. on a farm owned by Dotty’s father and started their new family. Dotty belonged to the Ladies Aid at Bethany Lutheran Church, Rio Junior Woman’s Club and sang in the Woman’s Club Chorus.

In January 1952, Dotty and Ernie bought a farm south of Vandalia. In 1962, they sold the farm and bought a bright red house in Vandalia, where they lived for 41 years.

Dorothy was an active member of St. John's Lutheran Church where she played the organ every Sunday, baked luscious pies and desserts for the annual bazaar, and was active in the Women’s Guild as well as serving as secretary and Christian Growth Chairwoman for the Northeast Missouri Zone Lutheran Women’s Missionary League.

Dorothy loved music. She taught piano lessons in Vandalia for over 35 years teaching as many as 50 children and several adults every week. In addition, she taught organ lessons a couple nights a week at various churches in Vandalia. She held a recital on the first Sunday of May for all her students and was proud of their many accomplishments. She retired from music lessons in 1996.

Dotty also led an active life as a member of PTA, Band Parents, P.E.O., St. Cecilia Music Club, Girl Scout leader and served on the town swimming pool board. She also traveled with friends exploring new places and fishing in the Ozarks.

After retirement, Dotty and Ernie satisfied their wanderlust by taking their grandchildren on trips around the country. And as always, she stayed active in the community volunteering at the food pantry and the Northeast Women’s Correctional Center.

In 2018, Dotty moved to an apartment at Tri-County Care Center. Her family wishes to thank the many compassionate and loving caregivers and staff at Tri-County Care Center that made her final years and days so special.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. John's Lutheran Church 414 S Main St., Vandalia, MO 63382 or the Tri-County Care Center 601 N Galloway Rd, Vandalia, MO 63382, in care of Waters Funeral Home.

Online condolences may be made to the family on Dorothy's memorial page at


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