Loraine (Lainie) C. Dibble, 93, formerly of Naugatuck and Cheshire, died November 25, 2015 at the Alzheimer’s Resource Center in Plantsville. Born in New Jersey to Sidney and Elizabeth (Nicol) Cadwell, she grew up in Grosse Pointe, Michigan and lived for almost 60 years in Naugatuck before moving to Cheshire. Lainie was predeceased by her beloved husband, Lew.
Lainie married Lew in 1942 while she was still a student at Smith College. She graduated in 1943 and moved around the US for a year following Lew’s army postings, until he was sent overseas. At the end of World War II, they moved to Naugatuck to raise their seven children.
Lainie was dedicated to public service, especially to public education. She was a PTA president as her children were growing up and later served on the Naugatuck Board of Education for 25 years, chairing the curriculum committee and serving as secretary of the Board. She especially loved visiting the schools and seeing what was happening in the classrooms. When she resigned from the Board to move to Cheshire, the library at Salem School was named in her honor and Salem celebrated ‘Mrs. Dibble Day’ each April.
Lainie enjoyed furthering her own education as well, auditing courses at Yale for years.
She was recognized for her public service with numerous awards, including the Distinguished Friend of Education Award from the Connecticut Association of Schools, and the Peter Foley Award from the Naugatuck Schools Council.
Lainie did not hesitate to branch out into new areas, taking up bicycling and music in the 1970s, co-founding the Connecticut Coalition of Bicyclists in 1976 (now the Connecticut Bicycle Coalition) and forming a contemporary music group at her church. In 2002, she received the Founders Award from the CBC. She began traveling with her children when Lew died, taking bike trips to England and Portugal along with trips to France and Japan. She loved playing tennis, beginning as the Michigan Junior Champion in high school and continuing to play well into her 80s.
Lainie is survived by her children and their families: Terry (Tania) of Bloomington, IN; Ellen of Northampton, MA; Peter (Melba) of Bethel Park, PA; Peggy (Ken) of Cheshire; CT, Laura (John) of Brandon, VT; Ned of Boulder, CO; Ben (Jo Ann) of Middletown, OH. She is also survived by 25 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren.
Lainie’s family would like to express their profound gratitude to the angels at the Alzheimer’s Resource Center of Connecticut who cared for Lainie with affection and respect over the past several years.
A memorial service will be held at the Naugatuck Congregational Church, 11 Division Street, Naugatuck at 10:30 AM on January 2. There are no calling hours and burial will be private and at the convenience of her family. The Alderson-Ford Funeral Home of Naugatuck has been entrusted with her arrangements. At the request of her family, donations may be made to the Naugatuck Congregational Church, or to the Loraine C. Dibble Library, Salem School, checks made out to the Salem PSA, 124 Meadow Street, Naugatuck, 06770.