Christine F. “Chris” Fairchild

Christine F. “Chris” Fairchild, age 74 of Batesville, Indiana, passed away Saturday, February 10, 2024, at Margaret Mary Health in Batesville.  Born June 10, 1949, she is the daughter of Stuart and Mary Rose (Nee: Fackler) Hummel.  Chris married Kenneth D. Fairchild on July 5, 1969, at St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Lawrenceburg, Indiana.

Born in Jeffersonville, Indiana, then spending her childhood years in Lawrenceburg, and finally settling down with her lifelong companion, Ken, in Batesville, she wore many hats in life. She started her working career at the IRS as a tax investigator, before becoming a stay-at-home mom, bringing up her two beloved children Dana and Ryan, then later, her granddaughter Brie. As her children became of school age, an opportunity was presented to her to become the owner of a local bookstore, which became her lifelong passion. Not only did Chris make a living from The Bookshelf, but she also established a pillar within the local community, bringing together people from all over who shared the same passion. Chris was in fact a true bookworm, who could regularly be found either reading a book, or reading about a book!

In conjunction with her running the bookstore, Chris was actively involved in various related initiatives, demonstrating a commitment to community development and education. She has held several esteemed positions on multiple boards, including the Batesville Memorial Public Library and the Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce. Furthermore, her collaboration with the Batesville Community School Corporation highlights her dedication to enhancing educational standards, where she has provided mentorship to school librarians. Additionally, Chris served on the city of Batesville Planning Commission and the Board of Zoning Appeals illustrated her extensive involvement in civic and community planning. Beyond her participatory roles, Chris has been the recipient of several awards, recognizing her contributions and leadership. Notably, she nominated Batesville for “Community of the Year” award, a prestigious accolade that the city secured in 1997, further testament to her impactful engagement and vision for the community.

Outside of her work Chris loved to travel, having visited many countries across the world, including Australia, New Zealand, the UK, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Greece, and a trip through the Panama Canal, just to name a few. Travel for Chris was not just about experiencing new places, but more importantly for her, was about the people with whom she traveled, and throughout her travels, she got to undertake these experiences with many of her cherished circles which included her family, friends, and sorority sisters. In fact, she was omnipresent at the Phi Beta Psi national and state conventions, which she attended every year in many different locations across the United States, and where she will be sorely missed.

Chris’ family and friends were the center of her universe, and her aim in life was to always make sure that everyone was happy, something that will live on in children and grandchildren. Chris loved nothing more than having her family and friends around her, and always put the needs of others before herself. Growing up, Chris lived in a very bustling household, which consisted of her 5 siblings David, Bill, Jim, Patty and Tim, and parents Stuart and Mary Rose. Over the years, Chris remained the cornerstone in ensuring that the siblings remained connected. On top of raising a family, Chris also found the time during this period to coach youth softball and volunteer at the former Margaret Mary Community Hospital Guild where she helped support its many projects.

Outside of her blood family, Chris was a lifelong member of another family – the Phi Beta Psi sorority – Xi Chapter. Chris spent the past 52 years devoting her time and knowledge towards its goal of financially supporting countless physicians, scientists, and medical research facilities across the country, attempting to help put an end to cancer. During this time, she personally gave back countless hours to assist with fundraising efforts and broader community awareness. Concurrently, Chris held nearly every office in its local chapter multiple times, and then in 2018 she ran for the elected office of National Editor, where she won the candidacy and was elected to a 2-year term, which was further extended by a year due to the pandemic. Most fittingly, Chris was presented with the highest Phi Beta Psi honor in 2020, by being awarded a lifetime membership to the sorority, along with her 50-year membership insignia.

Chris was truly the perfect example of a good citizen, and consequently her family, friends, sisters, and the City of Batesville have been truly blessed. Chris will be wholeheartedly missed by all of those who had the fortune to have known her.

She is survived by her husband Ken of Batesville, son Ryan Fairchild of Batesville; daughter Dana (Matthew Stanesby) Fairchild of Chicago, Illinois; grandchildren Brie and Lilly; brothers William “Bill” (Rita) Hummel of Guilford, Indiana, James “Jim” (Judy) Hummel of West Carrollton, Ohio, and Timmothy “Tim” Hummel of Charleston, South Carolina; sister Patty Jarboe of Huntsville, Alabama.  In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her brother David Hummel.

Visitation will be held Friday, February 16th, from 4 – 7 p.m., at Weigel Funeral Home in Batesville with a Phi Beta Psi Sorority service at 4:30 p.m.  In accordance with Chris’s wishes, cremation will take place after services.  Memorial contributions may be made to the Phi Beta Psi Sorority.  For online condolences go to