ANKENY, Iowa – Nancy K. Dickson passed away peacefully at her home in Ankeny, Iowa at the age of 71. A visitation will be held at 10 a.m. at the Mount Morris Church of the Bretheren on Saturday July 6, and will be followed by a Celebration of Life service at 11 a.m. in the Church, and burial at Oakwood Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials to Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, bbrfoundation.org.
Nancy consistently sought joy and happiness in all things around her. Whether a routine e-mail reminder at work, correcting one of her children’s mistakes, or even training a misbehaving pet, she always carried herself in a fun and positive way. She was particularly adept at making otherwise unpleasant situations pleasant or even fun. As just one of countless examples, a few years after being diagnosed with the pulmonary disease which eventually claimed her, one day she swallowed her pride and used a motorized scooter at the grocery store. Being her first time riding such a device she collided with isles and other store property numerous times. Instead of being ashamed or risking more pulmonary stress by walking, she began referring to using motorized scooters as “taking the basher”, and developed a comical wave for all future collisions.
Nancy was the first-born child of Robert Dickson and Esther (Hedrick) Dickson, who lived in Mount Morris. Her parents and her youngest brother, Steven Dickson, preceded her in death.
Her survivors include two children, Elizabeth Wisnosky of Iowa City and David Wisnosky of College Park, Md., and two grandchildren, Grace Wisnosky and Faye Wisnosky of Iowa City. She also has two surviving siblings: Jan Franklin of San Diego, Calif., and James Dickson of Mount Morris. She has several surviving cousins including Diane Swengle of Mount Morris.
She married Mounder classmate Larry Wisnosky in 1971 and divorced over two decades later.
After she graduating from Mount Morris High School in 1966 she went to Western Illinois University where she studied Mathematics and German but graduated with a B.A. in Philosophy. She also attended graduate school at the University of Illinois in Urbana and North Dakota State University in Fargo. In graduate school, she studied the administration of higher and continuing education. She worked in higher education for over 20 years and retired as an administrator and instructor at the Des Moines Area Community College. Indeed, her passion for education spanned her whole life. Examples include rallying a Parent-Teacher Association in the 1980s to influence the naming of a new high school, to her nearly last communication in a family group chat reacting to a granddaughter's enjoyment of a selective college-for-kids program, which was a beaming smile.