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Digging for Life / Intro.
Forty inches wide,
Eight feet long,
Four-and-a-half feet deep – not six
COOLVILLE, Ohio – Since the age of 19, Dorsel Bibbee has lived by those measurements as a gravedigger. Now at
the age of 72, he is one of the few remaining gravediggers in Southeast Ohio who still digs by hand. Bibbee is beginning
to feel his age. He suffers from arthritis and he has difficulty climbing in and out of the graves he digs. Nowadays, most funeral
directors only hire men with mechanical digging equipment. Yet Bibbee insists he is not ready to call it quits.
Bibbee gets through each day with his friend, Helen Findling. Since 1978, the relationship between Findling
and Bibbee has been reciprocal. With no surviving family, they help meet each other’s daily needs while providing
companionship. Bibbee, unable to cook, is fed. Findling, unable to drive, is taken where she needs to go.
This is a look into Bibbee’s life, and a profession that is nearly obsolete.