ANDERSON, Darrell Frederick, age 70 of Kettering, passed away Tuesday, September 19, 2017.
He was born in Maysville, Kentucky, in 1947 to Charles Frederick “Fred” and Dorothy Anderson. His home was Ripley, Ohio. Growing up he loved being a Boy Scout and watching any kind of Western. St. Michaels Elementary School always held a special place in his memories; he had numerous adventures at Ripley Union Lewis High School and in Ripley Theatre Guild. He left for the University of Dayton and there found both a career in stagecraft and his wife, Debbie. He received his BA in 1969, his MFA from Ohio State in 1991.
Darrell taught at UD for over 40 years. He carried a full load of classes and designed and produced four shows a year. He loved lighting and set design and looked forward to productions when he could shine as a scene painter. For over a decade he served as Director of the Theatre Program and academic advisor. He retired in 2016, designated Professor Emeritus. In all, he designed, produced and constructed sets for over one hundred fifty shows, with the backing of his loyal group of students in the shop at Boll Theatre. He also designed for the Human Race, the Opera Funatics, the Dayton Theatre Guild, and the Cincinnati Zoo Holiday Theatre. He loved lighting design for dance, from early days with Miss Jo at Dayton Ballet up to DCDC in the last decade.
In 1991 he was awarded an “Outstanding Design” award from the US Institute for Theatre Technology. He also received numerous DayTony awards and was inducted into the Dayton Theater Hall of Fame in 2013. These accomplishments are rivaled, however, by the proud victory of 1991 when his team, the Underachievers, ended the season in first place in the Faculty Bowling League! In the best tradition of his father Fred, he was always ready to help a friend—too many evenings to count, he was home late because he had bumped into someone on campus who asked a favor.
Friends and students recall his talent, inventive spirit, and dry wit, such as “Shows open and shows close. One of those will be good.”
Darrell loved to cook. His pies are legend in the Anderson family. He loved good movies and good vacations. Most of all, he loved his family and the time he spent with them.
He was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Debbie; brothers Dan and Don Anderson; sons Joshua (Amanda) and Jesse (Coreen) Anderson; grandchildren Josie, Canyon, Jasper, Adelaide, Emmett and Matilda.
Friends will gather at Christ Episcopal Church, 20 W. 1st St., Dayton between 10 and 11 am on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017 with a Memorial Service at 11 at the church. Graveside service will follow at Calvary Cemetery. A reception and gathering will be held at the University of Dayton Kennedy Union, Torch Lounge, from 12:30-4:30pm. At Darrell’s request, friends and former students will gather in Boll Theatre for photos, stories and celebration.
In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be directed to the John Parker Historical Society, Ripley, Ohio in Darrell’s name.