After a brief illness, Doreen Dickie joined the ranks of the angels on March 10th. Without a shred of doubt, our loss is heaven’s gain. Gregarious by nature, Doreen loved people. You could tell by the way her eyes lite up and the way she hugged you with that big heart of hers. Anytime I had the pleasure of an encounter; I walked away with a lighter brighter step. Nor am I alone in this feeling, she left a swath of smiles in her wake like Tinker Bell and stardust.
If an equal measure like at Disney World: Not this tall? Can’t ride the ride- exists at the Pearly Gates I imagine it will be something akin to the way Doreen lived her life. The bonnie Scot epitomized geniality and good humor. She left everyone with the sense when parting of having left a dear friend. And dear, she was too! Who wouldn’t be endowed with twinkling blue eyes, and dimples? That charming Scottish lilt that made everything she said sound even more delightful!
How the town of Aberdeen allowed the Dickie family to leave is anyone’s guess. Scotland’s loss is our gain. Economics were bleak in their native Scotland in the early seventies before the oil boom. Bill and Doreen sought a better life. Having seen the world as a merchant marine Bill knew what he wanted for his family. He narrowed his search for a new home to Australia, Canada, or The United States. There were few kith and ken to leave behind. An offer from West Virginia to manage a cattle and sheep farm cinched the deal. The couple took a huge leap of faith and accepted the job. There next opportunity to landed us in Albermarle county.
Mama Dickie’s hugs are the stuff of legends. When enveloped in her loving arms all was right with the world. It matter not what calamity might have driven you to seek her sheltering arms. She sharpened her hugging skills as a pediatric nurse for twenty- three years. With the possibility of having such a nurse, getting sick doesn’t seem like such a bad thing. When grown her patients brought their children back to meet their caretaker. They wanted their children to experience her tender embrace. That love went both ways. Mum Dickie often checked in with her former patients, as well, with a card or a call from out of the blue.
Doreen, tipped off by angels, intuited those in need. Be it an ear, flowers from her garden or shortbread cookies, she provided them all. We can all be grateful that she stamped her family with her values. Joy, gratitude for life, smarts, and a volunteering work ethic are family traits. Oh, and sparkling blue eyes. No one in the family shirks hard work and sharing the wealth of their mother’s wisdom. Thanks to their mother’s tutelage, each one of her children pursues a life of service.
As the publisher of albemarle Magazine, Alison is always on the lookout to give non-profits a leg up. Bill Dickie is the manager of Plain Dealing Farm has served on the board of the Albemarle County Fair for years. Alison credits him for roping her into working at the fair for at least as many years as her brother. We have to share the bounty of such a family with other communities. Boston is lucky to count Lesley Dickie as a resident. How could you not feel safer knowing one of Doreen’s offspring is a vice president at Raytheon. That would be Lesley. She takes responsibility for eight hundred fortunate employees. The youngest of the clan Alan is the owner of Dickie Hauling. He lives in Nelson County and is active as a fire and rescue volunteer when he’s not working with people in need. Th watched their mother throw herself into her passions and have followed suit.
The nationalization of the Dickie family at Monticello was one of the most moving on record. Even in death Doreen Dickie continues to give to her adopted land. She left us with a magnificent family to carrying on her largess and a standard for all to aspire.
A Celebration of Life is planned for April at King Family Vineyard. Because of Doreen’s love for children, in lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Doreen’s memory to Kate’s Club, attn.: Rachel Ezzo, Development Director, 1190 W. Druid Hills Drive NE, Suite T-80, Atlanta, GA 30329, www.katesclub.org or Foothills Child Advocacy Center, 1106 East High Street, Suite 100, Charlottesville, VA 22902, www.foothillscac.org.