|Birth: ||Mar. 8, 1924|
|Death: ||Jan. 30, 1947|
Anita J. Dibbert was born March 8, 1924, the second child of Harry H. and Edna (Petroske) Dibbert.
Anita was blessed with a bright mind and an outgoing and vibrant personality. She loved reading, spending time with family and friends, and sleeping in on weekends. The Dibbert home was always a center of activity for student projects and neighborhood fun. While in high school, Anita participated in many activities including band and pep clubs. Good grades came easily to her. She was scheduled to graduate as valedictorian of the Custer High School class of 1942, but decided to take early graduation in January instead.
In December of 1946, Anita began suffering from headaches and after extensive testing was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Cancer treatment and brain surgery were still in their infancies in the 1940s. The family surgeon recommend a physician specializing in this type of surgery and arrangements were made for the specialist to fly into Milwaukee from New York on January 29, 1947 to perform the surgery.
From January 28th through January 30th, Milwaukee experienced a paralyzing snow storm. All air traffic was suspended, city streets were clogged with snow and abandoned cars and trucks. Between eighteen and twenty four inches of heavy snow fell and was blown into fifteen foot high drifts by winds of forty five to sixty miles per hour. A very limited number of city streetcars were moving in the lesser hit areas of the city but refused to stop completely for fear of becoming stuck in the snow. Passengers were forced to hop on or jump off of the slowly moving vehicles. During this time, Anita was prepped and waiting for the surgeon to arrive from New York. Her mother, Edna Dibbert, waited at her bedside with her. Anita died at the age of twenty two, on Thursday, January 30, 1947, while waiting for the storm to subside and her physician to arrive. Her mother was at her side.
Anita's death was not expected or Edna would not have found herself alone in the hospital. She wanted to be with her family and needed to share her grief with and be comforted by loved ones. Against the advice of hospital personnel, Edna hopped onto a streetcar and after hours of maneuvering the city streets, the streetcar slowed down just enough for her to jump off onto the street a few blocks from the home of her brother-in-law and sister-in-law Ben and Louise Dibbert. In the meantime, her son Harry Jr. got in his car and drove across town, on sidewalks, around stalled cars, trucks and buses, and through snow drifts from the north side of town to the south side where his mother waited for him to bring her home.
A few days later while the city was still digging out from the storm, a new life joined the family with the birth of a child to Harry Jr. and his wife Margaret.
More than sixty years after her death, friends and family remember Anita with laughter and love and continue to share stories about her life. Her memory lives on.
Harry H. Dibbert (1899 - 1956)
Edna V. Petroske Dibbert (1899 - 1995)
Wisconsin Memorial Park
Created by: cryptfindr
Record added: May 14, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 52358748