Cheryl Elizabeth Derrick MacDonald passed away peacefully in her Kauai, Hawaii, home Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, (with her husband Kevin, sister Lynn and cousin Ike by her side) after a long battle with cancer. She was born in Grangeville, Idaho, Nov. 25, 1964, to Robert and Joan (Birchmeier) Derrick. The family lived in several places in Idaho, finally settling in Alaska where Cheryl graduated from North Pole High School and earned an associate degree as an airplane & powerplant mechanic from Hutchison Career Center in 1983. She worked as a mechanic on small aircraft until she landed her dream job as a mechanic working for Alyeska Pipeline in March of 1994, as a pipeline technician at PS07. In 2000, she took a temporary special assignment as a Sr. Maintenance Planner Scheduler at PS01, then transferred to a Technician Level 6 position. She worked at PS01 for 16 years. In 2016, she moved to PS09 and worked there until she left Alyeska in March of 2019. On Feb. 7, 2017, she married Kevin Ewing where she helped manage the Clearwater Lodge in Delta Junction with him.
Cheryl was a lover of music, basically teaching herself how to play the guitar at age 10, then buying her first guitar from her savings, which included counting at least $10 worth of pennies on the counter of the music store in Grangeville, Idaho. Cheryl eventually learned how to play the clarinet, saxophone and oboe, (her favorite) playing in the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra. Horses were her passion; she ran an ad for free in the Lewiston Tribune at age 14 and found a job cleaning stables for Mrs. DeAtley, later owning her own horses, Lita and Harley; they were her children. Cheryl built her own home, loved the outdoors, art, and travel, visiting Southeast Asia, Central America, Austria, and many domestic destinations, in the process of becoming a million miles flyer. Cheryl fell in love with Kauai, buying a home there in Eleele in 2014.
Cheryl was preceded in death by her mother, Joan Birchmeier, grandfather, William Birchmeier, grandmother, Mary Birchmeier, grandfather, Harold Derrick, grandmother, Christel Huff Derrick. Cheryl is survived by her husband, Kevin Ewing, stepson, Lowen Ewing, stepdaughter, Tressa Helkenn, father, Robert Derrick, sister, Lee Derrick Zello (Nick) and sister, Lynn Derrick; many cousins, nephew and nieces and more friends than any one person could ever hope for.