Helen P. DeVries, 88, of Venice, FL, died April 7, 2021. Helen was born on October 18, 1932, in Hopewell, Nova Scotia, to Arend and Tryna Roskamp, and grew up in Titonka, Iowa. Helen graduated from Central Teachers’ College in 1952, and taught school in Kalamazoo, Michigan. She married her lifelong partner and beloved husband, Don DeVries, in 1955, and settled in Ada, Michigan. In 1971, the family moved to Venice where she continued to raise her six children. She was a faithful member of Venice Presbyterian Church. She volunteered for over 20 years at both the South County Food Pantry and Tidewell Hospice. She was a lover of birds, nature, cooking, arts and crafts, and was a voracious reader of classical fiction and religious texts. She could recite scripture and classical poems from memory for almost every occasion. Her true passion in life was her family, and child-rearing, and she enjoyed taking her small children, and later, her grandchildren, on excursions to Caspersen’s Beach and other local nature attractions. She also enjoyed travelling with her husband, Don, in Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, Africa, and the Western USA. Her door was always open, and she generously shared her faith, her wisdom, and everything else she had, with those in need. Helen’s enduring legacy will be the love and care she showered upon anyone who came into contact with her expansive clan. She was a family woman.
She is survived by her brother Miller Roskamp of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, brother Gresham Roskamp of Dana Point, California, brother Bob Roskamp of Sarasota, FL, sister Diane Cirksena of Pagosa Springs, Colorado, and sister Marcia Bergie, of Stillwater, Minnesota; her children: daughter, Paula and husband, Mike Evans, of Nokomis, FL, son, Joe and wife, Aline O’Connor, of Nairobi, Kenya, daughter, Mary DeVries of Clearwater, FL, son, Jon, and wife, Cheri, of Venice, FL, son, Chris, and wife, Heather, of Indialantic, FL, son, Andy, and wife, Samantha, of Nokomis, FL; son-in-law, Kip McCord; grandchildren: Nicole and husband Mike Gartley, Allison and husband Brian Martinez, Susie and husband Tony Carlin, Dexter McCord, Amina and Helena DeVries, Cameron Evans, Naomi, Chloe and Gabriella DeVries, Natalie Hays, Ellie and Julia DeVries, Maxine and Iris DeVries, and Luke Funk and Katya Budzinski; and great-grandchildren: Aidan and Adaline Gartley, Riley, Cody, and Hayden Martinez, Henry, Myla, and Josie Carlin. She is also survived by many in the Venice community who will honor the memory of this good woman. A memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to South County Food Pantry, 800 S. Tamiami Trail, Venice, FL 34285.