In Memory of






Obituary for Barbara Ruth Hand Dyer (Ambruso)

Barbara Hand Dyer, 81. -Milford

Barbara Ambruso Hand Dyer, age 81, passed away suddenly at her residence in Milford, DE on February 6, 2023. She was the daughter of the late Anthony J. Ambruso and Ruth Colvin Ambruso. Barbara was born and raised in South Philadelphia where she attended St. Monica Elementary School and a was a graduate of Saint Maria Goretti High School Class of 1959. After graduating she attended Immaculata College where she was a music major and sat first chair as a violinist.

Barbara married Herbert “Chick” Hand and they lived in Chesapeake, VA for a number of years before settling down in Dover where she got her nursing degree from Wesley College in 1976 followed by her anesthesia certification from F.B. Lane Haines School of Anesthesia. She was a C.R.N.A at Milford Memorial Hospital, Christiana Medical Center, and retired from Kent General Hospital in Dover. Years after Chick’s death, Barbara married Dr. Thomas E. Dyer and moved to Milford.

Barbara enjoyed spending time with her family and friends, shopping, dining out, and playing card games on her iPad. Any time she was presented with a need for suffering animals or children, she would reach for her checkbook. Barbara was generous to those less fortunate. She was a member of St. John the Apostle Catholic Church in Milford where she liked to attend the Saturday evening service.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husbands Chick Hand and Tom Dyer, her daughter Jeanna Hand Elliott, and her granddaughter Lauren M. Myers.

Barbara is survived by her son Michael A. Hand (Dana) of Lithia, FL; daughter L. Michelle John (Robert) of Rehoboth Beach, DE; bonus children Joan Sampson of Barrington, NJ; Holly Hand (William Walker) of Hidden Valley Lake, CA; and Chris Thacher of Concord, CA; grandchildren Stephen J. Hughes, Courtney L. Marshall (Joshua), Laura E. Peper (James), Robert A. John, III (Shannon), seven great grandchildren, two brothers Michael J. Ambruso, Sr. of Dover, DE and Anthony J. Ambruso, Jr. of West Deptford, NJ as well as a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Barbara was looking forward to the birth of another great grandson in 2023.

Mass of Christian Burial will be offered 12 PM Tues. Feb. 14th at St. John the Apostle Church, 506 Seabury Ave., Milford, DE 19963. Viewing will be held 10:30 to 11:30 AM Tues. Feb. 14th at Lofland Funeral Home, 102 Lakeview Ave, Milford, DE. Interment will be 11:00 AM Wednesday, Feb.15th in Holy Cross Cemetery, Yeadon, PA. Arrangements by Michael J. Ambruso Funeral Director, Inc., Dover, DE. Please visit to share a fond memory of Barbara or to offer a condolence to her family.