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Carol May Pfeiffer

3/16/1936 - 06/17/2017
Service Date: 07/07/2017 at 11:00 AM
Location:St. Patrick Catholic Church
Service Details
Rosary will be recited July 6, 7:00pm at St. Patrick Catholic Church.
Carol passed away on June 17, 2017. She found peace, surrounded in love by her husband and children, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Carol May was born to Dr. Maurice McKay Dodge and Grace Roberts Dodge on March 16, 1936. An original North End Tacoma girl, she graduated from Stadium High School in 1954 and went on to attend the University of Washington.

From an early age she displayed curiosity and a can-do attitude in a wide variety of athletic and social endeavors. As the only girl on the 6th grade boys' baseball team (and a 5th grader at that!) she was a real show stopper. She was a drum majorette, participated in dance and theater, and was selected for an early global youth advocacy group. Her senior yearbook caption noted her dream for a large and loving family. She lived out that dream with Bob Pfeiffer, a Bellarmine Prep boy whom she met in high school, and with whom she cultivated a love affair that lasted over 65 years.

She became a Catholic, and they married in 1957. Through their unwavering partnership they raised seven children and several black labs. As a natural leader and lifelong volunteer, Carol May held roles as Girl Scout troop leader, Holy Cross Mother's Club president, the Catholic Woman's Club and board member and President of Philomethae at Bellarmine Prep. She and Bob received the first Dee Thomas Award for their contributions to the Bellarmine community, and they volunteered for years at Hospitality House Kitchen. Carol May was the inspiration and driving force for her family, and an unwavering supporter of all of her children's pursuits. She traveled for her grandchildren's birthdays and was always at the checkpoint of her daughters' marathons with banners to cheer them on.

Both the Dodge and Pfeiffer families were great lovers of the outdoors, a tradition carried on by Carol and Bob as they road-tripped across America and beyond. They visited national parks from Denali to the Everglades, Maine to the Grand Canyon. They loved the Alaskan wilderness and the Iditarod dog race. They drove the Autobahn, visited the Black Forest, safaried in Kruger Park, explored the Australian Outback, and sailed the Great Barrier Reef.

Carol instilled in her family a determination, love, and affection that we are lucky to share today. Above all, she was a stylish lady, loving mother, wife, daughter, and a formidable force to all who knew her. This big presence lit up any room she entered, often as the gracious party hostess in her warm and comforting home, where there was always an extra plate ready for the unexpected guest to join the family festivities.

She was predeceased by her parents, as well as her brother Dr. Byron Dodge, and her son Michael McKay Pfeiffer. Carol May is survived by her husband Bob Pfeiffer, and children Thad (Irene), Tim (Matt), Marycarol (Tom), Chris, Milissa (Kasey), and Buffy (Corban), along with grandchildren Dylan (Caitlyn), Chloe, Sadie, Meghan, Michael, Nathan, Andrew, Emily, Gabriel (Jenna), Taylor (Dune), Max, Logan, Kennedy, Krystal, and Nick.

Funeral Mass will be celebrated at Saint Patrick Church in Tacoma on Friday, July 7th, at 11:00am. Reception following. A Rosary will be recited on Thursday evening, July 6th, at 7:00pm. Thanks to the outstanding team at Swedish Cancer Institute and her hero Dr. Henry Kaplan, who guided her through her 5+ year battle. He is her star and ours. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Swedish Cancer Institute at

Arrangements by Gaffney Funeral Home
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