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A Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

Dixon Family Services and I recently lost a very good friend, volunteer and long-time supporter, Ben Romero.  I attended his services and the funeral home was packed with many friends, family and fellow members of the Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus.  The evening Rosary and service went overtime because so many people got up to share their memories of Ben and the reasons they all loved him so much.  Lightheartedly several pointed out that Ben would have been upset because he was always adamant about starting a meeting on time and ending on time.  This I witnessed myself for the years he took the lead role of the Advocates for Dixon Seniors and coordination of the annual Senior Resource Fair.

The next morning’s Mass was also highly attended by people who knew and loved Ben.  Hearing everyone’s fond memories and comments about Ben, I realized that all of his attributes that I admired were many of the other people’s reasons for their love and respect of the man.  I remember Ben saying “Work Smarter, Not Harder”, “Why pay someone to do what you’re capable of doing yourself” and to “Always behave and do your work as if someone is watching, because someone is, God sees all.”

Ben was such a smart man and a Jack of All Trades.  For this reason, when recognized as Citizen of the Year by the Dixon Chamber of Commerce he became known as the “Man of Many Hats.”  No matter what the situation may be, Ben was always the first one to step up and ask what he could do to help.

Ben was a mentor to me as well as many others during his lifetime, always happy to teach his self-taught skills to others, a model of professionalism, high ethics and positivity.  I never met another person that could see any situation for the silver linings as he could.  Ben was very encouraging to me when I needed it most.  Among many other wonderful acts of kindness, Ben helped my children and I through the adult catechism RCIA Program and then sponsored my son as he was confirmed into the Catholic Church.

I have many fond memories of Ben and I take comfort in knowing that he will not be forgotten.  He made a lasting impression on everyone in his family and circle of friends.

In a final act of kindness and show of support for Dixon Family Services, Ben strongly suggested that he preferred people make donations to our organization rather than buy flowers for his funeral.  Many people did as he asked and I know that would make him very happy.  He is up in Heaven smiling down on us all and I am sure that he is one of God’s best helpers.

Ben Romero will be missed by his loved ones and many people who were lucky enough to know him, and that includes me and my family.  Rest in Peace My Friend!

Sincerely, Cookie Powell

Things Just Sometimes Have a Way of Working Out

Several weeks ago Dixon Family Services was suffering from a “broken” air conditioning unit.  Right in the middle of a triple digit spell we had no choice but to call a repair company.  We knew it was going to be expensive as the last time we needed repair it was over $800 and we were told at that time that all 3 of our commercial AC units would need replacement soon as it’s been almost 22 years since the Dixon Family Services organization completely renovated the very old building that once housed the Dixon Police Department, City Hall and a Dixon Municipal Courtroom.  The complete gut and rebuild was funded by grants secured by then Executive Director, PJ Davis and totaled near $400,000 for the project.

Needless to say, in these days of budget uncertainties, we were dreading the cost of a repair of one of our old 1998 AC units.  Well, on the exact day that someone was coming from a local AC company, a man named Aaron showed up and offered his services.  Aaron is retired from the profession of heat and air conditioning repairs.  He told us he had heard ‘through the grapevine of social media” of our problem and would take a look.

Up in the hot attic on a very hot day, Aaron spent a couple hours up and down in our attic and outside to the AC unit.  He replaced our filters and determined that a fan was needed.  He ordered the fan through a warehouse with his still current contractor’s license making it much less than we would have had to spend.  Two days later Aaron and his son, Kyle showed up and installed the fan, a new thermostat and free-on to the unit.  We were back in business with wonderful coolness.

Aaron wouldn’t take anything for his numerous hours of work.  We are very grateful that he heard about us and made it his mission to help us.  He believed it was the right thing to do and I am pretty sure that watching and helping his father in this act of kindness for us will help make Kyle a good man as well.

Thank you Aaron and Kyle!

From Cookie and Everyone at Dixon Family Services