Hedwig Derwinski, 95, of Simpson died Monday at the Carbondale Nursing Home surrounded by her family. She was the widow of Leo C. Derwinski, who died in 2004.
Hedwig was born on February 11, 1922, in the family home on Morse Avenue in Simpson to the late Frank and Mary Brill Molinski. She graduated from Fell Township High School in 1939. In 1946, she married Leo C. Derwinski.
Hedwig was a stay at home mom until her children were in school. Then she worked as a teacher’s aide at Fell Elementary School and as a head cashier at J.C. Penny, Master’s Department Store and Ames Department Store. She also worked at Farview State Hospital.
Hedwig’s greatest joys came from caring for her family and being involved in the community that she loved, Simpson. She was involved with the Bi-Centennial Celebration and organizing the Golden Age Society. She was involved with the Girl Scout Troop and became a Den Mother for a Cub Scout Pack in Simpson. She was a member of the Veteran of Foreign Wars Ladies Auxiliary Post #4712. She enjoyed singing in the choir of St. Michael’s Church and sang with the Forest City Area Chorus which produced an album in the late 1970’s. She also taught CCD classes at St. Michael’s.
Hedwig enjoyed her work with the Parent Teachers Association. She was elected President of the Fell and Carbondale Area PTA’s, Vice-President and President of the Lackawanna Area PTA and was Chairperson of the bylaw committee. She was proud of the Governor’s certificate she received in recognition of 50 years of voting. When her husband died, she finished his term as auditor of Fell Township.
She loved to knit, crochet and embroider. Hedwig knitted many hats and scarves for the homeless as part of the Confraternity of Christian Women of St. Michael’s Church, Simpson. Her lap afghans have provided warmth and comfort to many, Hedwig also embroidered many pictures. She enjoyed teaching others to knit, especially the children in the lunch room of Fell Elementary. She enjoyed painting ceramics and completing crossword and word search puzzles.
Hedwig was proud of her Polish ancestry and looked forward to singing kolendy (Polish Christmas Carols) before midnight mass. She cared about people and always looked with hope for the future.
She is survived by her children, Barbara Derwinski, Billings, Montana, Teresa and husband Frank McNamara, Carbondale, Lee Derwin and wife Beth , Simpson. Her most recent pride and joys were her granddaughter, Anne Davis and great grandsons, Andrew and Matthew. Two sisters, Bernadette Farber, Mayfield and Joanne Mattise, Simpson.
She was preceded in death by a sister, Regina Tuholsky and two brothers, Alexander and Thaddeus.
The funeral will be Friday from the Joseph W Scotchlas Funeral Home, Inc 621 Main St., Simpson with Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 AM in St. Michael’s Church, 46 Midland St., Simpson. Entombment will be in Our Mother of Sorrows Cemetery, Greenfield Township.
Friends may call Thursday from 5 to 8 pm and Friday from 9:30 until 10:30 AM
For directions or condolences visit: www.scotchlasfuneralhome.com