Ina M. Helkowsky


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York - As the sun rose on a new day, Ina M. Helkowsky, of York, Maine, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 24, 2019 at home, surrounded and prayed for by family, and today she stands precious in the sight of the Lord (Psalm 116:15). Born in Van Buren, Maine on October 31, 1941 to the late Rene and Corinne Rossignol. In February 1961, she married the love of her life; the late Robert J. Helkowsky Sr., and then followed along as he served his country honorably for the next 30 years in the U. S. Air Force. Ina had several occupations herself during that time. She was very enthusiastic in her Avon sales on-base and employed in the bowling alley snack bar at Eielson AFB, Alaska; completed the training and worked as a dental technician; hired on at the base commissary at Pease AFB, New Hampshire; then got a position as a bank teller at Northeast Credit Union in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. It was not an accident that each job description permitted her to be of service to others, while allowing ample time to converse and visit with as many people a day as possible. Prior to their retirement, she and Bob settled in York, Maine as their forever home.
Ina was a loving wife, mother, grandmother and friend to all. She was zealous about her Patriot's football team; especially when watching them play against Bob's Steelers. It delighted her to snowmobile and spend many weekends camping with her family while living in Alaska for 11 years. She loved her two Persians, Precious and Princess; and was passionate about shopping, tending to her plants and flowers, doing crafts, and going all-out when decorating her home for every season and holiday.
She especially adored, and was proud of, her three children, Leslie Gipson and her husband Lucky, of Wasilla, Alaska; Robert Helkowsky Jr. and his wife Amy of Berwick, ME; and Neil Helkowsky and his fiancée Karen Cote, of South Berwick, ME. She is survived by her two brothers, Larry Rossignol and his companion, Carol Desjardins, of Van Buren, and Danny Rossignol and his wife, Jackie, of Caribou; and her four sisters, Rena Smith and her husband, Gordon, of Albuquerque, NM, Donaldine Soucie and her husband, Raymond, of Portsmouth, NH, Velma Castonguay, of Caribou, ME; and Mona Mongeon and her husband, George, of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She was predeceased by one brother, Herman Rossignol, whose wife Irene still resides in Van Buren, ME. Ina cherished her grandchildren, Josh Gipson; Jamie Delanuez-Gipson and her husband Alex Delanuez; Zach Blanchette; and Katrina Blanchette. She also leaves behind numerous aunts and uncles; nieces and nephews; and many loving friends.
She possessed a contagious smile and an entertaining sense of humor, and this, combined with her ease in frequent conversation with even total strangers, allowed her during her valiant fight with Cancer, to reach out, comforting others receiving Chemotherapy and Radiation treatments, even as she struggled with her own. Her signature gift of joy, shown through her constant laughter and hugs, will never be forgotten.
Ina enjoyed volunteering her time with Pease Greeters, helping as Bob served as VFW Post 6977 Commander, and lunches with her girlfriends with the Red Hat Society.
Services - The family will receive friends on Friday, August 2nd, from 6:00 until 8:00 PM at the J.S. Pelkey Funeral Services, 125 Old Post Road, in Kittery, Maine. A celebration of life service will be held at 11:00 am, Saturday, August 3rd at St. Christopher's Church, 4 Barrel Lane, York, Maine. Immediately following, please join the family at a small reception in the fellowship hall downstairs.
The family is deeply grateful for the outpouring of love, prayers, and support in many heart-felt forms from too many people to name individually; and a special thank you to the Beacon Hospice for their exceptional tender care and support of our Mom. Memorials in Ina's name may be made to Beacon Hospice by making a donation to the corporate office of Amedisys Foundation at 3854 American Way, Suite A, Baton Rouge, LA 70816, in lieu of flowers.
Ina will be laid to rest at the Southern Maine Veterans Cemetery in Springvale. Together again, for all eternity, with her loving husband, Bob.
Care of the Helkowsky family has been entrusted to J S Pelkey and Son Funeral Home.
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Published on July 30, 2019
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