WASHBURN—It was a wonderful life, and though she regretted leaving it, she considered the breadth of the Milky Way and said, “I will see you in the stars.” Deri Robertson Ament was born on May 14, 1945, in Detroit, Mich. to Daniel and Doris Robertson. She left us on Jan. 5, 2020. Deri grew up in Woodland Hills, Calif., graduating from W. H. Taft High School. Determined to become a teacher, she collected college credit from Pierce Jr. College in Calif., and Kent and Cleveland State in Ohio. She met Dave, the love of her life, on a blind date in Cleveland, on Easter. Seven months later, they were married, on Thanksgiving Day. Together, they continued their joint effort to earn teaching degrees from UW-Whitewater. She was thrilled to accept her first teaching position in Kewaskum, Wis. on her 26th birthday.
Children were Deri’s passion, and she was destined to be an educator. In 2003, she received the Baraboo School District Teacher of the Year Award, an honor she considered her “lifetime achievement award,” having taught grades K-9 in four different school districts and substituted in others while supporting Dave’s career in school administration. She eventually settled into several years at the fifth-grade level (her favorite) at East Elementary, then retired from Baraboo School District in June 2004 to substitute teach and pursue other interests.
She tried hard not to be a “hover mother,” and said that her best work shined through her kids, Darci and Doug. Being their mother was one of her greatest blessings.
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Deri loved camping, and her first experience was with Dave—a three-month trip to the Western U.S. and Canada. It was so fabulous that they camped the next summer. When the kids came along, they shared their parent’s love for the outdoors. Deri cared deeply about people. As a member of PEO’s Chapter BR, she formed loving, supportive relationships while being instrumental in securing scholarships for young women. She maintained close friendships near and far. Deri was also an avid reader. Her book club buddies brought her so much joy. And she loved to paint and sketch. There was always a painting forming in her mind; a world of light and color.
Deri is survived by her children, Darci (Andrew) Tronick of Seaside, Calif. and Doug (Stephanie) Ament of Washburn, Wis.; grandchildren, Fletcher, Grace and Hunter Ament; niece, Julie (Bob) Ledford and their children, Lee, and Jack, Wash. Her husband, David, preceded her in death, as did her parents; brother, Robbie; and sister, (Deborah).
In lieu of flowers, please direct memorials to PEO Chapter BR, UW’s Carbone Cancer Center, or Camp Hope (a camp for grieving children; see camphopeforkids.org).
The family wishes to extend its deepest appreciations to Dr. Maureen Murphy, Dr. James Heun, and the staff at UW Carbone Cancer Center, SSM Health, Regional Hospice Group of Ashland, and Langford Drug of Washburn for their compassionate and supportive care. Her family would also like to offer a special thanks to all the Baraboo and Washburn friends who offered so much love and support throughout her battle. Her immediate family was small, as was Dave’s, but they were blessed with far too many friends to mention—friends that helped fill the void. Many holidays were celebrated with the Moon/Anchor family, and with George and Eleanor (John and Susan) Hanold. A wonderful life indeed.
Deri’s Celebration of Life will take place at the Baraboo Arts Center on Sunday, March 15 from 1-5 p.m.