Heading Logo


Christine Helen (Hriesik) Derby

1933-2017

Published: January 6, 2017 4:00 AM

Helen Derby, 83, of Kent, passed away Wednesday, January 4, 2017, at home after a long illness. She was born August 11, 1933 in Mansfield, Ohio, as the first child of Joseph Hriesik (HER shick) and Christine Erndt, and after 7th grade, moved to a farm in Perry Township, Morrow County. Helen graduated from Johnsville High School in 1951 and attended Ashland College, where she met Barton Derby. The two were married September 21, 1952. After several moves and the births of their four children, the family settled in Kent in 1960.

Helen enjoyed gardening and puzzles, and was an avid and accomplished genealogist. She was also active in Camp Fire Girls, serving as a troop leader and eventually as council president. Professionally, Helen was an educator, specializing in reading. She completed her bachelor's degree at Kent State University in 1962 and went on to earn a Master's degree and a Reading Specialist degree at KSU. She taught in the Streetsboro Schools, teaching at Wise Elementary School in the 1960s and 70s. In the 1980s and 90s, she ran her own private tutoring business, the Reading & Learning Emporium, in downtown Kent and later at her home.

Christine Helen (Hriesik) Derby

Since 1975, Helen has been an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, mainly in the Rootstown Ward (congregation), holding a number of positions. She and Mr. Derby served multiple missions for the church, first as temple workers in the Toronto Ontario LDS Temple in 1993-1994, followed by a mission as managers at the Cleveland Bishop's Storehouse in Brecksville, part of the LDS Church's extensive welfare program. As part of her deep interest and passion for genealogy, she was the director of the Akron Ohio Stake Family History Center in Tallmadge for many years, helping countless patrons access and understand vital records and resources and how to document and better understand their family histories.

She is survived by her husband, Barton Derby, of Kent; children, Linda Ridinger, of Kent, Bruce (Tracine) Derby of Yelm, Washington, Brenda (Rick) Porter of Riverton, Utah, and Brian (Audrey) Derby of Spanaway, Washington; 11 grandchildren; and 22 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her brother, Charles (Jane) Hriesik of Mansfield; sisters, Donna Jean Graham of Oregon, Margaret Wagner of Deming, New Mexico, and Maxine (Don) Young of Perry Township (Morrow County), Ohio. She was preceded in death by her parents; and younger sister, Mary Adkins.

Calling hours will be held Monday, January 9th at Bissler & Sons Funeral Home, 628 West Main Street in Kent, from 7pm to 9pm. Funeral services will be held at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2776 Hartville Road in Rootstown, on Tuesday, January 10th at 11am. Burial will be at Standing Rock Cemetery in Kent.

(Bissler & Sons Funeral Home 330-673-5857 RC 1-6-17)


Do you want to leave a comment?   Please Log In or Register to comment.