Former Reston activist Natalie Dorolyn (Dee) Cotton, 88, passed away May 4, 2012 following a stroke in Fredericksburg, Va., where she had moved in January. A Reston resident for more than 30 years, Dee Cotton was a charter member and former president of Useful Services Exchange (USE), and founder of the AARP chapter in Reston and its director from 1989 to 1999. As an active member of the Fairfax County Area of Aging, she was involved in a joint venture between it and AARP to provide moderately priced housing for seniors. At Island Walk Cooperative, where she lived since 1984 and was president of the Tenant Association, she spearheaded the effort to oversee its complete renovation and its continued status as affordable housing. She lived her philosophy that "everyone should live with dignity in a safe and decent home." Dee received the Lady Fairfax award representing the Hunter Mill District in 2003 and a Best of Reston award in 2005. Dee is survived by a daughter, Linda Bowman of Harpers Ferry, W. Va.; a son, Daniel; a granddaughter, Cori Cheeks; and two great-granddaughters, Makenna and Caitlin. Her ashes will be buried with those of her late husband at Quantico, Va. Memorial contributions may be made to USE, AARP, or to a college fund for her great-granddaughters in care of Cori Cheeks, 62 Blackwood Road, Camp Lejeune, NC 28547.
Submitted by Marilyn Silvey based on information from Dee's granddaughter, Cathy Hudgins, and Reston Interfaith files.