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John Carlos Dixon

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John Carlos Dixon Obituary
Dixon John Carlos Dixon. On Sunday, July 2, 2017, John Carlos Dixon, aged 92, of Reynoldsburg, passed away into God's hands at Mount Carmel East Hospital, surrounded by family and loved ones. John was born February 20, 1925 to John Cecil and Nora Monica (Smith) Dixon in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. He graduated from Connellsville High School in 1943, before enlisting in the Navy Reserves, and served 33 months in World War II. He was aboard the USS Joseph T. Dickman during the D-Day invasion of Normandy, where he helped load soldiers into Higgins boats bound for Utah beach. After transporting casualties and German POWs to England, he traveled to the Mediterranean and participated in five landings for the liberation of southern France. His description of his activities in Operation Dragoon on a recent visit to the National WWII Museum led his wife Jean to comment "I'm glad I met him after that - I'd have been scared to death for him!" In the midst of war there were still moments of levity - while staging in Naples, he hitched a ride with Yogi Berra to Rome to see the pope, nearly missing his ship's departure for the next landing in France. He returned to Norfolk, Virginia aboard the USS Barnett. Following its commissioning on his birthday in 1945, John was stationed on the LST 979 through the end of the war. After returning to Norfolk, John was assigned to LST-979 as a Machinists' Mate Second Class, tending to the ship's 5 diesel engines. With him aboard, the ship saw action in the Asia-Pacific Theater and was preparing for the invasion of Japan when the war ended. Returning home, he enrolled at Waynesburg College before transferring to Ohio Northern University, which allowed him to work as a lifeguard at Cedar Point. He graduated in 1950 with a degree in Civil Engineering, and was both a registered Professional Engineer and Professional Land Surveyor. As the first engineer in his family, John often liked to refer to himself as the "Grandfather of Engineering" after being followed into the profession by three children and four grandchildren. His professional career began with the Ohio Department of Transportation in Ashtabula, Ohio, before moving to Reynoldsburg, Ohio, where he helped to build the first sections of Interstate highway. He was active in advancing concrete paving, and authored the first technical publication of the American Concrete Paving Association, which was on the subject of pavement texturing to reduce hydroplaning. He worked at ODOT for 30 years, serving as Project Engineer, Staff Engineer, Bureau Chief, and Assistant Deputy Director. Following his retirement from Ohio DOT, he spent 10 years as Vice President of Engineering for the Ohio Ready Mixed Concrete Association (ORMCA). He authored many technical publications and design manuals, before retiring a second time. In 1951, John married Alma "Jean" Bricker, whom he had been introduced to by a friend a mere four months earlier. He didn't realize it, but she knew that first night she was going to marry him. For 66 years, they were happily married, raising their own five children and caring for Jean's parents. After John's second retirement, they enjoyed traveling--to Treasure Island, Florida for the winter, on countless cruises, and through the Canadian Rockies. John and Jean did everything together and were never apart for very long. Their love and commitment to each other have been a lasting example to all who've met them. John embodied the virtues of fatherhood and set an example with his patience, humility, and hard work for which all strive to achieve. Outside of his professional work, John was an avid golfer. He enjoyed a third unofficial career at the Broadview Golf Course run by son Matt Dixon, first helping coordinate the Tuesday morning senior mens' league, then later working behind the counter, where he knew every golfer by name, how they liked their coffee, and what snack they'd stop in for after 9 holes. He was also a devout Catholic and member of St. Pius X Catholic Church attending daily Mass and gracing others with his clear baritone singing. His steadfast faith was always a comfort and foundation for the family. Lord, let your servant go in peace and may the choirs of angels welcome John Dixon, a man who's faith and sense of humor have left an indelible mark on all those lucky enough to call him husband, father, grandfather, or friend. John is survived by his loving wife, Jean; children, Tim (Janet) of Charlotte, NC, Sue Dixon of Reynoldsburg, OH, Tom (Martha) of Jackson, TN, Mike (Chris) of Pinehurst, NC, and Matt (Tracey) of Pataskala OH; grandchildren, Jeremy, Jessica (Michael), John (Frances), Sarah, Nora, David, Samantha, Ryan, Kristopher, Emily, Andrew, and Jacob; great-grandchildren, Elijah, Emma, Alexander, and David. John was preceded in death by parents John and Nora, stepmother Eleanor, and five siblings George, Delores, Vivian, Donald, and Dale. Visitation will be on Wednesday, July 5 from 6-8 p.m. at COTNER FUNERAL HOME, 7369 East Main Street, Reynoldsburg, OH. Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Pius X, 1051 South Waggoner Road, Reynoldsburg, on Thursday at 10:30 a.m. followed by burial at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery. Messages may be sent to his family by visiting www.cotnerfuneralhome.com.


Published in The Columbus Dispatch from July 4 to July 5, 2017
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