MOUNT VERNON — Barbara Hollenbeck Reitsma, PHD, 59, passed away Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019, at her home in Mount Vernon.

Born near Pittsburgh, PA, she was the daughter of the late Rev. LeRoy and Lois (Rider) Hollenbeck.

Barbara is survived by her loving husband of 37 years, Charles Reitsma. She is also survived by her daughter, Kimberly Parsons (Sam); two sons, Douglas and Wesley; two sisters, Clara McCabe, Donna Cahill (Michael) and one brother, George Hollenbeck (Diane).

Barbara is a graduate of Wheaton College, IL, and earned her PHD at Iowa State University. She was a professor of Chemistry at Kenyon College for 6 years before committing herself full-time to raising her family and homeschooling. She was a treasurer and musician in her church; she was a patron of the arts and the Science Lady in her community; and she enjoyed life as a master crafter and gardener. For the past 15 years she has played a key role in the development of the Kenyon Math and Science Skills Center (MSSC).

A Celebration of Life will be held at The First Presbyterian Church of Mount Vernon, 102 North Gay St., Mount Vernon, on Nov. 9 at 11 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Pelotonia (; of which 100% supports cancer research at Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Submitted by Charles Reitsma


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