Esther M Dugger

May 26, 1924February 15, 2014

Esther M. Dugger, 89, of Bloomington, passed away at her home in Bell Trace Independent Living on Saturday, February 15, 2014. Esther was born in Salem, IN to the late John and Myrtle Packwood on May 26, 1924. She graduated from Salem High School in 1942 then went on to earn her BS degree in business from Indiana University. She worked at I.U. in the ticket sales office for 24 years.

Esther married William “Bill” Palmer Dugger in Bloomington on June 14, 1947. Bill preceded Esther in death in 1999.

Esther was involved with several volunteer groups. She was a Pink Lady at Bloomington Hospital for over 35 years and volunteered her time at Bell Trace in the recycling department. She was also a member of the First Christian Church, the Christian Women’s Fellowship, and the Fellowship Group of the First Christian Church, the IU Alumni Association and the IU Retiree Breakfast Group.

Esther is survived by her daughter: Elizabeth “Betty” Dugger, of Indianapolis, IN, son: John Reid(wifeRebecca)Dugger of Indianapolis, IN and granddaughter: Gabrielle Garland and great-granddaughter: Daliah Gleicher both of New York City and nephew: Donald Partlow of Henryville, IN.

She was preceded in death by her sister Mary K. Partlow and nephew Robert Partlow.

Friends may call on Thursday, February 20, 2014 from 4-8 p.m. in Day Funeral Home, 4150 E. Third St., Bloomington, IN 47401. The Funeral Service will be held on Friday, February 21, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. also in the funeral home, officiated by Pastor Helen Hempsling. Burial will be in Rose Hill Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the First Christian Church or IU Health Bloomington Hospital.

Online condolences to the family may be made to


  • Visitation Thursday, February 20, 2014
  • Funeral Service Friday, February 21, 2014

Esther M Dugger

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Connie Hill

February 21, 2014

Dear Family - we are saddened at the news of the loss of dear Esther. She was truly one of sweetist ladies and a wonderful volunteer for us for many years. We miss her sweet smile and wonderful attitude. She was a blessing to all of us. Thank you for allowing us to share in her wonderful life. Our hearts hurt with you.
IU Health Bloomington Hospital Volunteer & Visitor Services,
Connie Hil, Director

Tom Webster

February 19, 2014


Sorry to hear of the loss of your mother. My Mom called me tonight to let me know. I don't think I have seen you since our days at the IU Geology Camp in Montana in 1970. Hope you are coping well.


Your old boyhood friend, Tom Webster

Robin Ray Billing

February 19, 2014

Esther was a dear friend and neighbor, as my sisters and I were growing up, and our mother's best friend. Over the years, I always enjoyed visiting with Esther and Betty whenever I was back in Bloomington. Esther was a wise and remarkable woman, a gentle spirit, a calming presence, and a person who accepted and embraced life on her own terms. God bless Betty, John and the rest of the family. Your mother will be sorely missed.

February 19, 2014

Dear Betty, John, Rebecca, and Family Members,
It was a terrible shock to hear that we at Bell Trace had lost our wonderful friend, Esther. We are still trying to come to terms with the knowledge that we will not see our sweet, soft-spoken Esther again. She greeted everyone with a bright smile and had a charming way of using humor to talk about almost any happening, whether it was good or not. Esther was interested in many subjects and was of course a strong supporter of IU sports. She participated in many activities at Bell Trace and could be counted on to promote a good turnout for the concerts and other events which take place at Bell Trace. We know that you have many, many wonderful memories of Esther, as do we, and it is my hope that these memories will be of comfort to you at this most difficult time,
Harriet Pfister