WWII veteran in Iowa City will turn 101 on St. Patrick’s Day

A World War II veteran in Iowa City is just days away from turning 101. Now he's sharing his legacy of hard work and a positive attitude.
Published: Mar. 12, 2023 at 11:32 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A WWII veteran in Iowa City is just days away from turning 101.

Lowell Dibble will achieve that mark on St. Patrick’s Day. Dibble is a resident at Walden Place. At 100 years old, he still drives and starts each day with a workout.

“I don’t think he realizes the motivation he is to like people my age or like people around here,” Amy Castaneda, engagements coordinator at Walden Place in Iowa City, said.

Each night Dibble still talks to friends using Morse Code.

“I was a radio officer. The Merchant Marine only carries one, they’re not like the Navy, but I was the radio operator in the Merchant Marine,” Dibble said.

Dibble served during WWII and says it was different than other wars.

“I think when your country is attacked it really develops a lot of patriotism,” Dibble said.

After his time in the service, he married his wife Margaret Veronica. The two had four children. Dibble’s work ethic and attitude toward life are instilled in his son Mark.

“The excitement of just wanting to do things, get up in the morning, and all these things I want to do. It’s not what am I going to do it’s what of all of these things am I going to do today,” Mark Dibble said.

It’s an outlook that impresses everyone around him.

“It’s pretty cool to see you know how active he is at 100 and how he’s still driving and just still kicking butt,” Castaneda said.

Dibble said a positive attitude, his faith, and keeping busy have played a role in his long life. That, and good genes.

“Genes you have to start with genes I suppose. But then also your attitude towards life things like that. Always have a positive attitude, have some kind of an activity to get involved in and so forth,” Dibble said.

From serving in the war to this day, he hasn’t slowed down.