Dolores Helen Hickambottom was born March 27, 1931, the second of four children born to Edward and Lillian (Polite) Dupre in New Orleans, Louisiana. Her parents and sister, Mary Rose Arceneaux, and brother, Oscar Dupre, Sr., preceded her in death.
She was baptized at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, in New Orleans. Dolores attended Xavier Preparatory High School and upon graduation, enlisted in the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps to serve her country.
She met then Lieutenant Elbie J. Hickambottom at former U.S. Army Post, Fort Ord, California, where they were married on base and daughters, Ann Marie and Leslie, were born; followed by Elbie “Skip” Jr. in Schofield Barracks, Honolulu, Hawai’i and John, in Pasadena, California. Major Elbie J. Hickambottom, U.S. Army retired, predeceased Dolores in 2004 after 52 years of marriage.
The family settled in Altadena, California and as the children began attending local public schools, she began her efforts to advocate for equal opportunity together with Elbie in the drive to integrate the Pasadena Unified School District; later working tirelessly on his successful school board campaign where he served 16 years.
After 52 years of marriage, she was a committed member of the Altadena and Pasadena community. Her advocacy and civic engagement spanned more than 50 years and encompassed active service in many organizations.
She was a founding member of the Pasadena Educational Foundation, the National Women’s Political Caucus, Pasadena Chapter and, Women In Action. These included ACT, Pasadena NAACP, Arroyo Democratic Club, and League of Women Voters.
She was a proud member of Tuskegee Airmen Inc., Los Angeles Chapter where she was instrumental in connecting the Documented Original Tuskegee Airmen (DOTAs) to ride on the 2010 Rose Parade Float that honored them, “A Cut Above.” A proud veteran, she was a member of the Executive Board of the American Legion Post 13, Pasadena, California.
Dolores was honored to serve as field representatives on the staffs of Loretta Thompson Glickman, the first Black woman elected as a Pasadena City Director and to serve as vice mayor and mayor; and State Senators Walter Stiern, Richard Polanco and Jack Scott.
For her commitment and hard work, Dolores received many accolades – Pasadena NAACP Ruby McKnight Williams Award, Assemblymember Chris Holden’s Unsung Hero for Civil Rights, Altadena Woman of the Year, Congresswoman Judy Chu’s Woman of the Year, and with her husband Elbie, the City of Pasadena’s Arthur Noble Civic Award. In her recent community service, she was co-chair of the PCC President’s African American Advisory Committee and a member of the Huntington Hospital Community Benefits Committee.
She enjoyed reading. Her most treasured experiences were attending the Democratic Presidential conventions, and most especially, attending both inaugurations of President Barack Obama.
She was a long-time member of St. Andrew Catholic Church and active in the area chapter of Black Catholics. She enjoyed reading, discussing political and civic affairs. She attended Pasadena City College and graduated from California State University, Los Angeles, with a B.A. in Sociology.
She leaves to cherish her memory, her four children, Ann Marie, Leslie, Elbie Jr., Esq. and John, Esq.; her beloved granddaughter, Helena Jessie; her sister, Agnes Brumfield; nieces, Natasha Arceneaux and Tammy Hayden (Charles), Robin Foster (Greg); nephews, Victor Arceneaux (Sheila); Joseph “Rocky” Arceneaux (Lydia); Edward, Oscar (Trechelle) and Michael Dupre (Roslyn); and Timmy and David Brumfield (Kathy); and a host of cousins, other relatives, and many dear friends and neighbors.