Gail Knight Derick


Gail Knight Derick, 89, passed away following a brief illness on March 23, 2024, surrounded by her loving family. 

Gail was born on May 25, 1934, in Brockton, and attended Middlebury College, where she met Phil. Her passion for life was contagious, and she shared her love through everything she did — grade school and nursery school teacher, healthcare worker, hospice volunteer. 

Gail’s favorite part of life was being a mother and devoted wife. She walked her children from infants into adulthood, and was as proud of them as they were to call her Mom.

Gail shared a love of sports with her husband, in particular the Boston Red Sox; Phil took on the role of team ambassador in 2001. She accompanied Phil to many games, and loved assisting him in the role of fan services. Together they filled countless requests for Fenway Fan packs from around the world, and even helped take the World Series trophy on tour in 2004. In recent years, Gail found a passion following the Tampa Bay Lightning, watching games from her couch while holding hands with Phil every chance she got. 

Gail was predeceased by her father, F. Stuart Knight, and her grandson, Jack Knight Derick. She is survived by her loving husband of 65 years, Philip; her children, Jim (Jody), Jennifer (Matthew), and Alison (Emily); by her loving grandchildren, Michael, Christopher, Ryan, Meghan Gail, Caroline, and Theo, as well as her great-granddaughter Alessia. Gail was also predeceased by her aunt and uncle, Ruth and Mort Johnson, and her aunt and uncle, Barbara and Carl Knight, who played a vital role in Gail’s formative years, providing a wonderful family life in which she could grow. Gail’s important extended family included cousins Fritz Knight, Carl Knight, and Marny Walsh, all of whom she adored.

A celebration of Gail’s life will be held on Saturday, April 6, at 11 am at Christ Episcopal Church in Bradenton, Fla. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Lord’s Pantry, c/o Christ Episcopal Church, 4030 Manatee Ave. West, Bradenton FL 34205, in honor of Gail’s lifelong commitment to supporting people in need.

Gail’s presence will be deeply missed by her family and friends. Her brilliant love and infectious laughter will live on in the hearts of those who were fortunate enough to have known her. May she rest in peace, knowing she made the world a brighter place.


  1. Gail Derick was the kindest, most generous and most loving person that I have ever known. It was a privilege to be her friend.
    Gail volunteered at Windemere from the time it opened in 1994 until she took a position in the Recreation Dept. in 1999. She worked with us in Recreation until she moved to Florida in 2010. Gail loved the residents, and they adored her. She was a very special human being. Gail brought light and joy into every room that she walked into, and that light will shine forever in the hearts of all of us who loved her.

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