TERRE HAUTE —
John H. “Jack” Derry of Terre Haute, passed away July 6, 2012, of complications from surgery. He was born April 13, 1936 in Terre Haute to Howard Albert and Josephine Louise (Roesch) Derry. He is survived by his beloved wife of 53 years, Bonnie; his daughter, Sharon Derry and son-in-law, Michael Martin of St. Louis, Missouri; daughter, Sheila Derry and son-in-law Daryl Jones of Monrovia; son, Eric Derry and daughter-in-law, Kim Coates of St. Louis, Missouri; son, Alex “A.J.” Derry of Terre Haute and grandchildren, Hannah Jones, Sophie Jones and Nora Derry. He is also survived by his cousins, Charles “Chuck” Hayward, Nancy Hile, Wally Cochran and Vicki Fauth.
After graduation from Garfield High School, Jack attended Rose Polytechnic Institute of Technology (now Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology), graduating with a degree in electrical engineering in 1957. He was a member of Tau Beta Pi, the national engineering honor society, earning the honor for graduating in the top fifth of his class. He then earned his master’s degree from Purdue University.
Jack began his 41-year career as a professor of electrical engineering at Rose-Hulman in 1958. He was passionate about teaching and he loved his students. He particularly enjoyed teaching Operation Catapult, a summer program that helped prepare incoming students for their freshman year at Rose-Hulman. Jack also spent several summers teaching at Crane Naval Base. He retired in 1999.
As a young man, among his many interests were the exploration and mapping of wild caves and constructing and flying kites. Jack was a lifelong ham radio operator and 51-year member of the American Radio Relay League under the call sign K9CUN. He was an avid bluegrass music fan and a founding member of NCBAMA (National Crossroads Bluegrass Acoustic Music Association). Jack was the originator and first host of Rosie’s Pickin’ Parlour, a long-running bluegrass music radio show on WMHD at Rose-Hulman. He enjoyed photography and was a member of the Parke County Camera Club.
Jack was a member of Maplewood Christian Church.
His kindness, intellect and humor will be greatly missed.
There will be a memorial service with a reception immediately following at Union Christian Church, 5350 East Hulman Drive, on Saturday, July 14, 2012 at 4:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in memory of Jack may be directed to the American Cancer Society or the Alzheimer’s Association. Expressions of sympathy may be shared with the family online at: www.thomasfuneralhome.net