WDAY: The News Leader

Published November 20, 2011, 09:50 AM

Beautiful Women: La Ditzy teaches life lessons with humor

(WDAY TV) - They are two simple words, Beautiful Women, that conjure up a multitude of images and ideas. Forum Communications is proud to start a special project that looks to find and showcase true beauty, inner beauty.

By: Kerstin Kealy, WDAY

(WDAY TV) - They are two simple words, Beautiful Women, that conjure up a multitude of images and ideas. Forum Communications is proud to start a special project that looks to find and showcase true beauty, inner beauty.

You nominated dozens of women, all with incredible stories. You voted on the woman you wanted to hear more about. Tonight we meet our first Beautiful Woman.

Here she is, our first beautiful woman Deb Fowler, who quickly taught us "the beauty of laughter." This truly has been an incredible project to be a part of. We've met some amazing and humble women. Your moms, sisters, aunts and friends, all deserving and defining that inner beauty we are in search of.

Tonight, the creators of Beautiful Women, Bill Marcil Junior and Chris Linnares, hit the road to Walcott North Dakota to give us a glimpse inside the life of Deb Fowler. She is a gracious grandma with an inspiring story and attitude who will touch your heart.

Deb Fowler says she never imagined one day this would be the wardrobe for her "day job".

Deb Fowler/Beautiful Women: “I never thought about being a clown. I worked in an office for 25 years.”

Hard to imagine, it all started as a gag for her aunt's 90th birthday party eight years ago. With a little encouragement, She decided to get serious about clowning and what does that mean? Heading to clown college.

Deb Fowler: “Thought I was crazy. I just fell in love with the art. I never thought this was something I'd want to be, it just kinda happened."

And that's where La Ditzy was born.

Deb Fowler: “The clowning to me is almost like a calling that I was meant to do it.”

Years later, you can find her clowning around making her famous balloon animals at events all over our area. She and several other clown friends even started their own clown college and their gift of giving giggles even earned them an all expenses paid trip to India to clown there and international fame.

Wall Street Journal website: "What you do can affect people in so many ways."

She teaches life lessons with humor.

"I think it's all about not taking yourself too seriously. We all screw up sometimes and none of us is perfect and it's OK not to be perfect."

"I was afraid of making a fool of myself but that just comes with the territory.”

But Behind this bright and infectious smile is a story of strength and perseverance. This mother of 3 and grandmother of 6 has faced incredible tests of faith.

Deb Fowler: "We had one doctor say, it's ok not to treat him because he will die.”

At just a year and a half old, her youngest of three sons was diagnosed with brain cancer. Despite the radiation causing brain damage, Kenny not only survived, but is thriving.

Deb Fowler: “We had so many of the doctors tell us our son was terminal. He shouldn't be with us, but he is."

And now, Kenny at age 28, who Deb calls their miracle, is clowning along side his mom.

"Never say never. Now he's making people laugh.”

And its that laughter that has carried Deb and her family through. Even as she faced her own near death experience, open brain surgery after doctors discovered an aneurysm.

Deb Fowler: "I was lucky. Often you don't know you have a brain aneurysm until it's too late.”

Years later, she jokes she had more work to do on this earth.

Deb Fowler: "We're all here for a purpose."

That purpose she says was to help her son who lost his wife to an accidental overdose of pain medication. It left a single father to three kids trying to regroup. They moved home with Deb and her husband for over a year.

Deb Fowler: "They gave back to me in love and hugs more than I ever gave to them. The hard part is trying to get them through missing their mommy, she's in heaven."

Through heartache, she has not only kept a smile on her face, but gives the gift of a smile and laughter to all she meets.

"Put your feet on the ground and say today I'm going to have a good day. I believe so much in the power of prayer and destiny and bad things happen for a reason and that good comes out of everything."

And this wise clown, who has never once been afraid to imagine the possibilities in life, talked about the words that keep her going.

“I hope they think of me and it puts a smile on their face. I hope they can remember my love.”

You can hear much more from Deb and about Deb. Pick up a copy of The Forum tomorrow where she'll be featured. She'll also be on the Christopher Gabriel Program tomorrow and there is behind the scenes video from her interview on

This is only just the beginning of our Beautiful Women Project. You can vote online now for our three finalists for December, plus nominations will open soon for another round. So stay tuned and think of all the Beautiful Women in your life.