Dixon Place Downey, 91, Vero Beach

Dixon Place Downey, 91, died Jan. 25, 2010, at VNA Hospice House of Indian River County.

He was born in South Bend, Ind., a winter resident of Vero Beach since the 1950s and lived in Vero Beach for 30 years. He was in the Navy, serving in World War II as project manager in a guided missile project.

He attended Yale and DePauw universities. He was a member of the St. Elmo Society at Yale and managed the Yale Glee Club.

He was founder of Franklin Plastics in Pennsylvania and held several patents, including one for the original plastic boat fender. He was the author of “Vapor Trail at Twilight,” his autobiography.

He recently donated the Little Flower Memorial at Riverside Park to Vero Beach. In 2001, he gave the pavilion next to the memorial.

Survivors include one grandchild and one great-grandchild.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Virginia Downey; son, Dixon Downey Jr.; and brothers, Russel Downey Jr. and Daniel Downey.

Memorial contributions may be made to Dixon Downey’s Little Flower Fund, Community Church of Vero Beach, 1901 23rd St., Vero Beach, FL 32960-3426.

A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Feb. 3 at Community Church of Vero Beach.

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