Bloom artist hit by housing woes
By M.J Mahon
Published: September 18th, 2022
Imagine having 30 days to find a new home after living in the same house for 25 years. That’s
the situation Diane Derr and her husband Bill found themselves in when a new landlord decided
their rental house wasn’t worth repairing.
Diane, a talented artist whose paintings grace the walls of area homes and businesses, was
enjoying retirement with her husband, making ends meet with limited financial means.
Suddenly faced with the grim prospect of homelessness, Diane and Bill began to part with
countless keepsakes and mementos from their lifetime together while desperately searching for
a new rental that they could afford.
After finding nothing in their price range, Diane found Bill’s House. Formerly a church, the
donated building was renovated by Community Strategies Group to become a transitional living
facility for people facing homelessness. Diane and Bill now have a new home for at least the
next year, as they regroup with help from Bill’s House staff members, including a social worker.
Diane has now rediscovered her love for painting, and plans to begin creating art once again. A
showing of her paintings was held at Bill’s House recently, and Dianne’s murals are still on
display at the Northern Columbia County Cultural Center in Benton and the Bloomsburg