The life and journey of Dorothea Rae Czeczotka was extensive and well-lived. She was born in Denison, Texas, August 30, 1934. The 86 years of her life began with an early childhood faith influenced by her maternal grandmother. This influence stayed with her until her passing on January 26, 2021
She met Murray through mutual friends when he was stationed at Perrin AFB near Denison Her dedication so strong, she wouldn’t consider marriage to her husband in 1955 unless he was a part of her faith in Christianity. Ten months after discharge they married and lived in Hurst where Murray worked for Bell Helicopter as an air traffic controller.
The preacher there, Ed Wharton, would influence their move, 27 years later to Vienna, Austria where they joined the missionary staff at Eastern European Mission. EEM printed Bibles, New Testaments and literature in the languages of the nations behind the so-called “Iron Curtain.”
Her dedication to Jesus fulfilled her desire to be involved in missions. She learned a new language in her fifties and traveled extensively to all European countries in need of God’s word. During her 21 years living in Vienna, she hosted over a hundred people in her home as is noted in her guestbook. She loved to cook and was a delightful host, loving on those who visited her and sharing her funny wit while making all feel at home.
She participated Bible study Correspondences, she led many to find Jesus Christ. There are countless stories of their journeys behind the iron curtain, including detenions for being in places where they shouldn’t be going.
She wrote letters and also befriended an imprisoned man in Africa, sharing the gospel of Jesus through writing to him and paying for a lawyer to free him from a false charge. She was a gifted teacher, she taught marriage classes through a biblical foundation. She stay connected to family in her writing and the annual trips at Christmas. She traveled back to the US for the births of her grandchildren. And six of her seven grandchildren enjoyed visited her in Austria during summer school breaks.
Dorothea leaves her husband of 65 years, Murray Michael Czeczotka, three daughters, Karen Shaver, husband Guy Shaver, Sheri Gray, husband David Gray and Lori Jackson. Seven grandchildren, Cori Ruiz, husband Edgar Ruiz, Rusty Long, wife Brittany Long, Erin Starkey, husband Seth Starkey, Joni Dorothea Long, Michael Gray, Matthew Gray, wife Katie Gray, Tiffany Harris, husband Matt Harris. Nine great grandchildren, Evan and Zeke Ruiz, Arelli, Ezri, Becker, and Neri Long, Lincoln and Margo Starkey, Asher Gray and baby Harris due in April. She leaves her sister, Judith Waldene Nevil.
Her celebration of life will be held in her birthplace of Denison, Texas for family sometime in February. Arrangements pending. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be be sent to:
Eastern European Mission
777 Lonesome Dove Trail.
Hurst, TX 76054