By News-Register staff • 

Storyteller, author, Mac High grad John Dashney dies

Storyteller and author John Dashney, who grew up in McMinnville, died in late February. The Salem resident was 76.
Dashney was born in 1942 to longtime McMinnville residents William and Caroyl Dashney. He went to Memorial Elementary School, graduated from McMinnville High School and received bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Oregon.
Dashney, who was legally blind, became a storyteller in the late 1970s. He visited McMinnville schools many times over the years to tell his original tales to children; he also told stories across the U.S. and in other countries.

He wrote several children's books, including "Great Big Galloping Catfish," "The King of Messy Potatoes" and "Summer of the Hunters."
During one of his last visits to local schools, Dashney told stories at Sue Buel Elementary in 2010.
He explained how he progressed from speaking to writing.

"My stories got longer and longer, so I thought, 'This could be a book,'" he said. He told Sue Buel students he still loved to tell stories, performing them from memory with a great deal of expression.
Dashney is survived by his son, Braden Dashney, granddaughter Violet Dashney and former wife Judy Dashney.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 23, in St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, Salem.


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