Deborah Claire Esway, age 70, passed away on November 30, 2021. Debbie was born on December 6, 1950, to Gerrie J. Bauer of New York City, and Robert A. Bello of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she graduated Greenfield High School in 1968 (and was the Homecoming Queen). She lived for a time in New York and auditioned for Juliard as a prospective dance student. She used to say about not getting in, “they didn’t like my dance”, but all who knew her remember her love of dance and the joy it brought her to just put on a good record and dance around the dining room – especially with her children Heather and Noah. She would pick them up when they were small to dance “cheek to cheek”. She loved to move. And to laugh. Debbie attended Dominican College in Racine, making lifelong friends with whom she loved to play cards and stay up all night talking.
Debbie was a librarian in three of the Akron Public Schools: Crouse, Ritzman, and Windemere, and will be remembered by the many children whose lives she made more colorful with the world of books she opened for them. She loved to learn new things: sign language, autoharp, origami, tai chi, and even juggling, were among the many pursuits she took on with enthusiasm. In later years she made colorful boxes and beaded jewelry for her loved ones. She tried to teach the neighborhood kids to jump double dutch, and she never missed a single one of her children’s volleyball, baseball, basketball games or track meets – rain or shine. She loved the Doobie Brothers’ album Minute by Minute; birthday cake (especially the roses); and would laugh so hard she cried, when her kids got her going on a “laugher”. She stood up to bullies and loved fiercely.
She was preceded in death by her father, and stepmother, Jane Bello; and her brother Guy Bello.
She is survived by her devoted husband Gene Esway of Canton, Ohio, whom she met at a dance, his children: Maria, Nina, Joe, Vince, and Steve, and five grandchildren; daughter Heather Pollock, son-in-law Matt Neidert, and granddaughter Harper, of Akron, Ohio; son Noah Pollock, daughter-in-law Aida Ballesteros, grandson Samuel, and granddaughter Florence, of Alexandria, Virginia; sisters Jane and Jean Jeffrey, niece Jen Schierl, and nephew Christopher Dolan, of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and mother, Gerrie Bauer of New York City. Deborah leaves behind several beloved cousins and life-long friends, who all seem to know her for the vibrant light she brought everywhere she went.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to: ACCESS, Inc. Women’s Shelter, 230 W. Market St, Akron, OH 44303
Friends and Family will be welcome to help celebrate Debbie’s life on Friday, December 3, 2021 at Hopkins Lawver Funeral Home at 547 Canton Rd. Akron, Ohio 44312 from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM.