Bishop Dimmick, 65, Dies After Surgery

Episcopal News Service. November 29, 1984 [84237]

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (DPS, Nov. 29) - The Rt. Rev. William A. Dimmick died on Oct. 19, three days after having undergone open heart surgery. He was 65. The funeral service was held Oct. 22 in his hometown of Paducah, Ky.

Since August, Dimmick had been serving as assistant to the Rt. Rev. Furman C. Stough, Bishop of Alabama. Consecrated as Bishop of Northern Michigan in May of 1975, Dimmick resigned that post in 1982. He then served as assistant bishop in Minnesota, where he exercised an ecumenical ministry at a Roman Catholic abbey and university. For the year prior to his arrival here, he had been acting dean of Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Evanston, Ill.

Dimmick was a graduate of Berea College and held Masters and Doctoral degrees from Yale University's Divinity School. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1955, and his first cure was St. Phillip's, Nashville, Tenn., where he was priest-in-charge from 1955-60. From there he went to St. Mary's Cathedral, Memphis, first as canon and later as dean. During most of his tenure as dean, he also served as deputy to General Convention. Also as dean, he was a member of the Tennessee Board of Examining Chaplains. From 1973 until his election to the episcopate, Dimmick was rector of Trinity Church, Southport, Conn. He was also a member of the Episcopal Church's Standing Liturgical Commission from 1973 until his death.

At a memorial Eucharist held here on Oct. 26, Stough read a column which Dimmick had written for the October 1984 issue of The Alabama Churchman. It was to have been an introduction of himself to the diocese, and yet it contained a foreshadowing of the use to which Stough put it. In it, Dimmick expressed his great love for life and its beauties and quoted from Annie Dillard's book, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek: "I think that the dying pray at the last, not 'please,' but 'thank you,' as a guest thanks his host at the door."

Dimmick, who never married, is survived by four sisters.