Dick Lawson had commented that most of his antique furniture in his house came from St. Vincent de Paul. The Times Photo by Elena Stidham.
Dick Lawson had commented that most of his antique furniture in his house came from St. Vincent de Paul. The Times Photo by Elena Stidham.
Elena Stidham

Dick Lawson loves to bring life with his hands.
He loves to build dollhouses, he loves to work in his yard, he loves to do all kinds of things. Yet, above all, he loves to volunteer at St. Vincent de Paul.
For the past seven years, Lawson had been volunteering with his wife, Barb. He would assist in moving furniture, cleaning the location, working in the shop and other activities where he would be needed. It’s because of his dedication that pushed Bob Perry, a member of St. Vincent de Paul’s board of directors, to throw a surprise parade for Lawson’s 90th birthday on January 6.
Perry had commented on how Lawson is the “most valuable volunteer” that St. Vincent de Paul has.
“We couldn’t afford to pay him if we had to pay him, he’s worth that much,” Perry said. “He’s a very humble man, he does go to church, he’s very good at what he does, and at his advanced age he was moving furniture around in our store like a young person. … His age is catching up to him, but he keeps coming back for more. He’s very dedicated.”
Dozens of cars, along with the Noblesville Fire Department and the Noblesville Police Department had driven down 9th Street in front of Lawson’s house, honking and cheering while showering the man in presents and birthday wishes.
“Somebody went through all the work to provide this, because it doesn’t just happen,” Lawson commented on the sight, not believing his eyes. Most of the people that came by were co-workers, and others were complete strangers.
This moved him to tears.
“I guess you have to think that they think something of you,” Lawson said, his voice tight as he moved his glasses to wipe the tears from his soft eyes. “I can’t think of a single thing I did to deserve it.”
Yet, if you were to ask anybody else about Dick Lawson, they would give you a list.
From his dedication, his personality, his good heart, his desire to help people in need or to even his history in the Noblesville community, the list goes on. From a young age, Lawson watched his father impact the city of Noblesville as a Fire Chief, and even as the mayor. Lawson had mentioned how everybody loved his father, and how incredibly involved he was.
It seems the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
“It's easy to kind of look at him and see now this is what [a] person should be,” Lawson said. “It's just a place where I guess being kind of involved it has been bred into me. … It's always interesting to know what's going on around town, and it's good to keep up on that type of thing.”
Lawson wanted to thank everybody that took part in his birthday surprise and making it something he could have “never even imagined.”
“I’m gonna have more 90th birthdays,” Lawson said with a laugh. “These are a lot of fun.”