Dolores James Faherty

Dolores James Faherty 95, passed away on May 26th, 2024. Visitation will be 9am, Saturday, June 8th, 2024, at Nativity of Mary Catholic Church, 10021 E. 36th Terrace South, Independence, Missouri 64052. Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 10am. Burial will be in Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Raytown, Missouri.

Dolores was born on July 9th, 1928, in Independence, Missouri. She was the only child of Ray and Margaret James. She grew up in Independence and graduated from Northeast High School in 1946. She was a cheerleader her junior and senior year of high school and was a member of the National Honor Society.

She opened her own dance studio in 1946 and continued to teach for 35 years. During her dance career she had some pupils move on to famous careers. Ron Lewis who graduated from Northeast High School, started out with Starlight Theater, then moved on to the top spot at the “Latin Quarter” in New York City, which was owned by Barbra Walter’s father. He sent Ron to Las Vegas to the “Follies  Besgere”. Ron then became the choreographer for the “Dean Martin Show”.  He proceeded to become choreographer for Liza Manelli and received a Tony on Broadway and is now her manager. Jimmie Weaver was a student that danced for Disney World and then Opry Land. He moved on to become choreographer for Barbara Mandrell and Louise Mandrell.

She married George M. Faherty on June 25th, 1949.  They were married for 37 years until his passing in 1985.

She had five children Charles Lee Faherty married to Dianna Faherty, Cynthia Lynn Olivas (deceased) married to Pete Olivas, Lisa Ann Faherty Smith (deceased), Lacy Annette Faherty (deceased) and Lory Alane Faherty Wilcher;  grandchildren Chad Faherty married to Cheri Faherty, Brandon Faherty, Angie Oliver married to Jim Oliver, Ryan Faherty, Jonathon Rank married to Terry Rank, Steven Rank married to Stacy Rank, Christopher Smith, Dylan Jones, Ashley Howk married to Logan Howk,  and Jessie Talley; great grandchildren 15 and  3 great, great grandchildren

She served on the Alter Society at Nativity of Mary Church for 30 years.

She was a member of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority for 30 years.

After retirement in 1981 she participated and volunteered in many community activities. She volunteered for Claire McCaskill campaigns throughout her political career and volunteered for Mike Sanders, Jackson County Executive. She was a member and served on the board of the United Eastern Democrats for 30 years. She was a member of the Northeast High School Alumni and was on the school board at various times over 30 years.  She was on the board and participated in fundraising for the 5th Women’s Democratic Club. She was also on the board and participated in “Truman Days” Celebration every year in Jackson County for 26 years. She was a supervisor for the Jackson County voting board.  She participated in City of Independence elections for Ron Stewart as Mayor, Bill Baker as Mayor, City Council elections, as well as Jackson County executive office. She served on the Independence Ethics Committee. She helped with the transition of Van Horn moving to Independence School District.

She served as a judge for the Miss America Pageant circuit for Miss Missouri. She judged Dance competitions from 1986 thru 2008 in Nebraska, Texas, Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Louisiana and Kansas. She judged the Miss USA pageant for Miss Kansas when Tania Shackle was the winner, who is now married to Clark Hunt of the Kansas City Chiefs.

She received the Dutch Newman Award in 2007 being honored for exemplifying the best traditions and ideals of the fifth district.

She lived her life to the fullest living each day as her last. Those who knew her knew her love for life, family, friends and politics. She will be missed by many family and friends.


  1. Marie Parr on June 2, 2024 at 7:16 am

    Dolores was a trail blazer and a force to be reckoned with in the best way. She was ahead of her time in so many ways and the accomplishments throughout her life were numerous. She was a shaker and a mover who made it happen. All while smiling and laughing. I don’t know if I’ve ever met anyone who loved life and people as much as she did. She has left a lasting impression on this world and I will never forget her.
    I extend much sympathy to her big family and many loved ones.
    Marie Parr
    Former student and dance studio teacher.

  2. SueAnn Erb on June 3, 2024 at 8:07 pm

    So very thankful I was blessed to share many special times with Dolores, a mentor and friend. Our times together celebrating being a Viking with the students at Northeast High School were many. Dolores loved being a Northeast Viking wearing her purple and white … Dolores loved helping the kids! I will forever be grateful for all she did to support the NE Vikings N Club … she was always there to help with sponsored activities at the school and games. Dolores was a proud founding member of the alumni association and helped where and whenever she could. She was a shinning star!
    To Dolores family please accept my sincere condolences with love.
    SueAnn Slavens Erb

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