|Birth: ||Mar. 16, 1930|
|Death: ||Nov. 15, 1994|
Ernest Antone Dyer, a.k.a. "Sonny or Sonny Boy" the eldest of 4 siblings born to Antone and Harriett (Boothe) Dyer was born March 16 1930 at the Dyer Farm in New Goshen, IN.
It was not until "Sonny" was 2 years old that the family doctor, Jury B. Loving told Antone and Harriett that "Sonny" was a Mongoloid child, a.k.a. Down Syndrome.
The parents were told that in Terre Haute, IN at State High School they had classes for children w/Down Syndrome. By the time "Sonny" was six years old they had another son, Edward Leland a.k.a. Eddie.
Harriett assumed the responsibility of taking "Sonny" to Terre Haute on the required days. This continued until "Sonny" was eight years old. He was able to write his name, pronounce words and count.
The school system changed and could not take any one who lived in the country, therefore "Sonny" was "homeschooled" by Harriett for a short time because the Dyers were farmers and could not devote as much time to "Sonny's" education and development.
Harriett had been told by Dr. Loving there was a woman doctor in Columbus, OH whose specialty was Down Syndrome. She (Harriett) made arrangements for "Sonny" and Eddie to be cared for and off she went by bus to Columbus, OH. Note the dates...this was during the depression. Harriett was able to glean some helpful information from the doctor, but the situation was what it was. The Antone Dyer family later had two daughters: Sue and Toni.
It NEVER entered Antone and Harriett's mind to have "Sonny" institutionalized. "Sonny" was included in all family activities to include going to church w/the family. He lived his entire life with his mother and it wa a very active, full life until his death in 1994 at the age of 64, which was and is most unusual for "Down Syndrome".
The nickname "Dode" or "Dodie" came about because Ernest refered to himself as "Doe Doe" and later his mother or father would say "Dode"
Antone Dyer (1903 - 1973)
Harriett Gertrude Boothe Dyer (1908 - 2001)
Highland Lawn Cemetery
Created by: Kelly Polston
Record added: May 31, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 27226661