James Dickerson

Obituary of James R. Dickerson

James R “Jim” Dickerson, 66, passed away at his home in Camdenton, Saturday, September 28, 2019.  He was born on October 6, 1952 in Springfield, Missouri and was one of the first babies delivered at St John's Hospital.  He was educated in Camdenton and received his undergraduate degree in Political Science from the University of Missouri – Columbia.


In 1977  he married Mary Platter at the Dickerson Family Home, with several Missouri Republican Party leaders in attendance.  Although separated several years later, Jim and Mary remained close for the rest of their lives.  They had two children, Joshua and Laura.


Jim's career and personal interests were centered around politics.  A true political junkie, he had no need for several cable channels as he only watched the news networks or C-Span and was happy doing so. 


Jim was elected Presiding Judge of Camden County in 1977, and at that time was the youngest person to that position in the State of Missouri.   He remained in office until he decided not to run for re-election in 1986 and instead focused his profession on the Dickerson Family's newspaper operations.  At the time they sold the business in 1988, Jim was the Publisher of the largest chain of community newspapers in Missouri.


As a part of his political and governance interests, Jim was instrumental in a number of organizations and committees.  These included Camden County Republican Central Committee, President of the Missouri Association of Counties, Board Member of Central Ozarks Development, Chairman of Central Ozarks Private Industry Council, Chairman of the Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments, Chairman of Missouri Ozarks Community Action Agency, Chairman of the Lake of the Ozarks Overall Economic Development Committee, Chairman of the Missouri Association of Councils of Governments, Chairman of the Central Missouri Emergency Medical Services and Chairman of the Camden County University of Missouri Extension Council. It is worth mentioning that almost all of these positions were without any compensation.  Jim's focus was serving others and not on personal possessions.


Jim is survived by his parents Jack and Machir Dickerson; son Josh Dickerson and his Partner Amy Samons; Daughter Laura Gschwender and her husband Jeff; grandchildren Dillon Dickerson, Madison Dickerson, Jack Dickerson, Lucas Gschwender, Ryan Gschwender, Elise Gschwender,  step Grand daughter Ally Bethel; brothers Randy Dickerson and Rob Dickerson;  his aunt Mary Eldridge and long time personal friend Larry Murphy.  He is also survived by several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his Maternal Grandparents Ralph and Lucille Vincent; Paternal Grandparents Tom and Eula Jerry; and Brother Terry Dickerson.


Services will be held at 11:00 am, Wednesday, October 2, 2019, at Hedges-Scott Funeral Home, Camdenton, Missouri.   The family will welcome friends for  visitation from 10:00-11:00 am prior to services at the funeral home.


Interment will follow at Laughlin Cemetery, Camdenton, Missouri.