Richard William Helmeke, 74, of New York Mills, passed away July 19, 2009, at MeritCare Hospital in Fargo after a short battle with cancer.
He was born Jan. 12, 1935, in Lakeville, Minn., the son of George and Harriet (Naylor) Helmeke. He graduated from Patrick Henry High School in Minneapolis with the class of 1953. He moved to New York Mills as one of several baseball players invited by Russ Jacobson to play for the New York Mills Millers. He served in the Army from Jan. 25, 1955, to Dec. 4, 1957, stationed in Germany. On Aug. 2, 1958, he married Marcy Amberg at the Apostolic Lutheran Church in New York Mills. Together they made their home in Chicago for one year, then moved back to New York Mills where he was employed by Lund Boats for 42 years. His favorite memories include coaching, watching baseball, bowling, pulling all the kids on water skis, traveling, and following his grandchildren's sporting activities.
Funeral services were be held Wednesday, July 22, at the Apostolic Lutheran Church in New York Mills with the Rev. Don Salo officiating. The pallbearers were Patrick Campbell, Michael Lohse, Tyler Boyne, Mitchell Barthel, Justin Lohse and Reed Barthel. The honorary pallbearers were Brian Maki, Jay Maki, Todd Paavola, Jeff Lohse, Andrew Lohse and Charley Speed. Military honors were provided by Charles D. Center VFW Post 3289 of New York Mills. He was laid to rest in Woodland Cemetery, New York Mills. Arrangements were provided by the Karvonen & Son Funeral Home of New York Mills. Condolences may be sent online at www.karvonenfuneralhome.com.
Survivors include his wife, Marcy Helmeke of New York Mills; two sons, Bradley (Pat) Helmeke of Perham, Brent (Michelle) Helmeke of New York Mills; seven grandchildren; a brother, George (Mae) Helmeke of Rock Hill, S.C.; sisters-in-law, Elaine (Erp) Paavola, Lorraine Barthel, Brenda (Keith) Boyne, Becky (Brian) Lohse, Sandy (Steve) Speed, Abbe (Tom) Campbell; brothers-in-law, David, Wayne and Paul Amberg; several nieces, nephews, other relatives; and a host of friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Robert Helmeke; and brother and sister-in-laws, Ken and Aileen Maki.