The Life of Dorothy R. Brett

Dorothy R. (Wirtz) Brett, 80, of Kempton, PA, passed away Sunday, September 27, 2020 in Lehigh Valley Hospital – Cedar Crest, Allentown. She was the loving wife of James J. Brett, whom she married on June 23, 1962.


Born in Schuylkill County and raised in Mahanoy City, Dorothy was a daughter of the late Edmund and Barbara (Schreyer) Wirtz. She was a graduate of Mahanoy City High School and Kutztown State Teacher’s College, now Kutztown University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in education. Dorothy taught English and Reading in the Wilson School District, West Lawn, PA, and the Northeastern School District, Manchester, PA. She later worked for the Wildlands Conservancy, Emmaus, PA.


Dorothy served on the board of the Albany Township Historical Society and was a volunteer at Kempton Fire Company and Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. She was an avid reader and enjoyed spending time in her garden.


In addition to her husband of 58 years, Dorothy is survived by her three children, Christine (Brett), wife of Donald Ryan, Kutztown, Andrew Brett, Kempton and Matthew Brett, husband of Shelby (Rudolph), Lenhartsville; four grandchildren, Cecily Ryan, Michaela Ryan, Mason Brett, and Mitchell Brett.


She is also survived by her sisters, Barbara (Wirtz), wife of George Yurick, Gettysburg, PA, Katherine (Wirtz) Midson, Portland, OR, and Janet (Wirtz), wife of Richard Zimmerman, White Haven, PA.


In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by a daughter, Suzanne Brett.


A visitation will be held Thursday, October 1, 2020 from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. and from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. in Ludwick Funeral Homes, Inc., 333 Greenwich Street, Kutztown, PA. Current CDC guidelines will be followed regarding gathering sizes and social distancing and masks must be worn. 


In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Dorothy’s memory to Kempton Fire Company, P.O. Box 62, Kempton, PA  19529 or Albany Township Historical Society, P.O. Box 95, Kempton, PA  19529.


Ludwick Funeral Homes, Inc., Kutztown, PA is in charge of arrangements. Memories and condolences may be shared at


Click to View Memorial Tribute Video

Filter Dorothy R. Brett's Timeline by the following Memory Categories


My late wife and I first met Dotty and Jim in the 1970's and they let us into their lives and that of their children as friends. I enjoyed several parties at their home, gatherings at the mountain and all their mentoring that they both gave to us freely. Special people will always remain special in the hearts and minds of those that knew them. All my love to Jim and family,  Bob Davidheiser



Posted by Robert D on 10/01/2020

My lifelong friend

we met in first grade St Fidelis German Catholic School in Mahanoy City PA . There were only 6  girls in our class but many boys.

When we graduated from 8 grade there were 5 girls.

Hours after school and all summers we played together .Spent hours and hours at each other's house . I thought her bedroom on the 3rd floor was just the greatest 


We learned to make homemade fudge in my mother's kitchen and other candies

As we grew we formed a Canasta card group as we thought we were modeling ourselves after the older girls. Our group met at my house and we always prepared food just like the "older people "did for their card games 

Dottie was always good at math and would help me. I always marveled at how she got the answers because I could not do it

Onward to high school which caused a separation as our last names placed us to in different home rooms, then some different class rotations but after school we were together until she found a boyfriend. 

She was a cheer leader and spent hours teaching me for tryouts but I never succeeded to make the team

12th grade graduation, summer work schedules and college bound 2 friends said our tearful goodbyes

Over  the years we kept in touch thru weddings , I was her bridesmaid, babies , husbands and then retired years of many many lunches 

I will deeply miss my friend and will offer many prayers for her peaceful journey to heaven.

Hope the family will stay in touch with me. I know in their hearts and lives she wife/mother was the glue holding the Brett's together 

May her soul rest in Peace

Anne Marie









Posted by Anne E on 10/02/2020