My Aunt Helen passed away this week.
This photo, taken in the early 1950's shows my grandmother and her (surviving) children standing in birth order. My mom is the second from the right and Aunt Helen is next to her. My mom's oldest sister, Agnes, died in the 1930's of TB. Agnes had a son around my mom's age and he was raised as a brother; however, he is not in this photo.
With the passing of Aunt Helen, my mom is now the only surviving sibling.
This photo taken in 1943 or 1944 of the three sisters (L-R): Helen Hamilton, Geneva Yeats, Sarah McCalip.
Aunt Helen lived life to the fullest and had a bit of a reputation as being the wild child of the family. In later years she developed Alzheimers and spent the last year or so in a care home. I am happy to say that my mother was able to visit her (in Texas) about a week before she passed and Aunt Helen was in a more lucid state, saying "that's my baby sister!"
Aunt Helen was married three times and had two children, Karen and Larry. Cousin Larry died suddenly last August at the age of 62. Aunt Helen attended the service, but was not aware, due to the Alzheimers, whose funeral it was for; so I guess it was a blessing.
Aunt Helen's third husband of 25 years, Wilbert (Bill) Parent, lovingly cared for her until the end.
Although I did not know Aunt Helen well, I always felt a certain connection knowing I was named after her.
Rest in peace dear Helen Marie.