Feb. 3, 1919 - May 10, 2014
Howard Dickerson: World War II Veteran, former mayor of Westmorland, lifetime Valley resident.
Howard Dickerson was born February 3, 1919 to Edward and Berta Dickerson in Brawley, California. He passed away May 10, 2014 in Loma Linda, California. Howard was a lifetime resident of the Imperial Valley and spent his childhood years growing up in Holtville where his mother operated a restaurant, and Westmorland where his father was Chief of Police.
Howard graduated from Holtville High School in 1937 where he was a standout athlete and football star. He continued his education from 1937-1939 at El Centro Junior College where he played fullback for the Arab's and earned the nickname "Crash" Dickerson. His standout performance led to a scholarship to play football at the University of Arizona, Tucson.
In March, 1942, he was commissioned an Ensign in the United States Navy and earned his Wings of Gold in Corpus Christi, Texas, just over 2 months after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. As a PBY Catalina pilot and navigator, he was ordered to VP-23 in Hawaii just in time to participate in the historic Battle of Midway in June of 1942, and the follow-on 6 month campaign at Guadalcanal and the Solomon Islands from August through November of 1942. He finished his wartime flying in the Caribbean flying PBY Coronados patrolling the Panama Canal area.
In 1955, Howard married his loving wife of 55 years, Marion Mordasini of Brawley, California. Together they raised 5 children and lived most of their life in Westmorland where they owned and operated Dickerson's Chevron Station for over 35 years. Howard loved fishing and hunting and he and Marion, along with brother Charles, his wife Gene and their son Steve, made yearly trips in October to hunt deer and elk in Colorado. Howard was fully involved in the community and served as both Councilman and Mayor of Westmorland in the 1960s and was a member of the Westmorland Community Presbyterian Church.
He was preceded in death by his son, Howard David Dickerson, his first wife Eula Mae Williams (Banning, CA) his second wife Marion Mordasini (Brawley, CA), and his 3 brothers: Harold of Calipatria, Charles of Westmorland, and George of Riverside.
He is survived by his daughter Lonie (Banning, CA), and sons Ron (Lancaster, CA), LeRoy (Brawley, CA), Mark (Hesperia, CA), and Ross (Poway, CA); 12 grandchildren, and 11 great-great grandchildren.
Memorial Services will be held at the Westmorland Community Presbyterian Church, 285 E 3rd St, Westmorland, CA, on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Westmorland Community Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 668, Westmorland, CA 92281.