Helen Hill



On May 14, 2020, Helen DelValle Hill passed away at the age of 101.

She was born in Tampa, Fla., on Jan. 18, 1919, to Raymond Patrick DelValle and Rosalea Palermo DelValle. She married the late Ben Hill Jr. at the First Presbyterian Church in Tampa, where they became “founders” of the Homebuilders Class – a legendary group of Tampa young couples who grew up and raised their families together. Ben and Helen enjoyed a wonderful life of family, community, church and travel over 67 years of marriage.

Helen loved her children and was always a part of their lives. She was the mother of Ben Hill III (wife Marte, Tampa), Anne Stephens (husband Jack, Tavares, Fla.), R. Patrick Hill (wife Brenda, South Carolina) and Jane McMullian (husband Marty, Palm Harbor, Fla.). She also is survived by nine grandchildren, Ben Hill IV (Michelle), Gordon Hill (Hayes), Elizabeth Crittenden (Rob), John Stephens (Ann), Matt Hill (Amy), Judson Hill (Bryony), Adam McMullian (Julie), Reid McMullian and Drew McMullian (Catherine); 15 great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren.

She was the youngest of 10 children and was preceded in death by five brothers (Robert, Ray, Bill, Charlie and Joe DelValle) and four sisters (Rose Muzio, Lenore DelValle, Hortense Morris and Victoria Kreher.)

A graduate of Hillsborough High School and Tampa Business School, she nurtured her family in Tampa and planted roots in homes in Wellswood, Saddleback Lake-Lutz, Carrollwood Village and ultimately University Village. She served as secretary to the principal at Buchanan Junior High School for over 20 years. Her love of gardening and cooking reflected a family heritage for which her passion never ceased.

Helen loved to sing, and nearly any situation warranted a special chorus, most often from her church hymnal! Her smile and hospitality became legendary and she found joy in everything – only her happy side counted. She took many young people under her wings as part of an extended “family.”

Together, Ben and Helen loved to travel and accomplished their goal of visiting every state in the U.S. Each fall for many years they traveled to Cape Breton in Nova Scotia and then moved south following the fall colors, ending up in Sylva, N.C., where they spent much of their retired life. Everywhere they went, they developed many friendships. Helen will be truly missed by family, friends, and so many that she influenced over her long life.

Due to the current restrictions associated with the virus pandemic, there will be no public memorial service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Helen’s name to the First Presbyterian Church, 412 E. Zack St., Tampa, FL 33602; www.blountcurrymacdill.com.