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William Helmer, 71, of Marion, died May 3, 2000, at Newton.

William Helmer was born Sept. 25, 1928, to David and Anna (Eberhardt) Helmer in Kip Alberta, Canada, where his family homesteaded. His family returned to the United States when he was six months old. They returned to Marion County where Will attended grade school and graduated from Marion High School in 1946.

Following high school, he worked for his brother George, at Helmer Service Station.

He met Juanita Gutsch in August 1950, and they were married Dec. 15, 1950.

In 1951, he began work at Wolf's Creamery. He also worked on building the dam at Marion Reservoir and worked for Hassinger Plumbing. For 11 years, Will and Juanita owned and operated Willy's Dairy Palace. He worked for Greeley Gas Company, retiring from there in 1991, after 22 years of service.

Will was a loving family man. He enjoyed fishing with his son Galen, other family members, and friends. He also liked cooking, canning, gardening, and 
carpentry projects such as building birdhouses with his grandsons.

He was preceded in death by his parents and three brothers, August, Harry, and Albert.

He is survived by his wife, Juanita of the home; four children, Galen of Marion, Ginger and Marshall Richter, Hillsboro, Greta and Steve Smith, Marion, and Gena and Merle Brandt of Yankton, S.D.; seven grandchildren, Nic and Natali Toupin, Trevor and Tyler Smith, and Garrett, Gavin, and Garner Brandt; brothers, George and John of Newton, and Dave, Fred, and Ezra of Marion; one sister, Ann Boese of Marion; and a host of nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Valley United Methodist Church with the Rev. Lance Carrithers officiating.

Special music included "Here I Am Lord," sang by Gina Brandt, Greta and Steve Smith, Trevor and Tyler, and "Daddy's Hand," sang by Gina Brandt and Greta Smith. "Amazing Grace," was the congregational hymn. Burton Tidwell was organist.

Casket bearers were Darin Helmer, Danny Helmer, Gary Helmer, Ladd Helmer, Larry Boese, and Darrel Helmer.

Interment was in Marion Cemetery. 

Memorial funds have been established in his name with the Kansas Wildlife Trust Fund for Improvements at Marion Reservoir or Valley United Methodist Church.
Transcribed and Contributed by Janice Reading

Last Updated:  Monday, November 14, 2005 19:19:33

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