Lyle Dickenson Remembered

Published: 7/24/2008

Lyle Dickenson, a long time member of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, passed away on July 24th, 2008. Lyle worked for the Sheriff's Office between 1956 and 1981. Lyle apparently held almost every rank including Sheriff for a brief period of time.

Ray Duncan, a long time friend and co-worker, wrote this in remembrance.

We just learned that a former officer and a good friend of mine and others has passed away “Lyle Dickenson”.  Many of you did not know Lyle as he was like many of us now (from the good old days).  There are a few still around that knew Lyle better than I and worked with him longer, but I worked with and for him for many years.  As best I can remember, he started his career with the Douglas County Sheriffs Office as a resident deputy in south county working out of Canyonville.  At that time, he was the only deputy in south county.  In his tenure with the Sheriff’s Office, he held every rank or supervisory position that the office had including Sheriff for a short time.  Lyle was one of the few people that I can remember that was up and down the ladder more than I was.

I remember him best as Undersheriff when Merle Jensen was Sheriff.  I was a deputy then and the last thing that you wanted was a trip to his office and, for one reason or another, I seemed to spend a lot of time there.  When you received a chewing out from him he did not leave anything for question and no room for argument.  There were a few times that I was simply glad to get out of his office in one piece and still have a job.  I specifically remember him telling me that “I either could not read or simply had a problem with doing what I was told to do.”  The reading part was not all my fault as when we would try to read his memos, we would have to get the dictionary as his command of the English language was second to none.  Looking back, I think he did that on purpose to challenge us to learn as his motto was to learn a different word every day.

I now understand many of the things that he said and taught me; too bad I was not smart enough then to apply some of it.  There are many of us here that owe him a great deal, including our jobs.  As in so many cases, I wish I had told him that and other things while he was still here to listen.

We now say goodbye Lyle and thank you for all you gave to the sheriff’s office and many of its employees.  We will miss you.

Ray Duncan