Helen Reeser (1916 - 2015)

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Helen Reeser, 99, of Beverly Hills, Florida, passed away late Saturday, September, 19, 2015 under the care of the staff of HPH Hospice and her daughter and daughter-in-law. Helen was born June 28, 1916, in Monaca, Pennsylvania (in the brick house in the quarry built by her father) to the late Leopold Michalec and Marie Hurych Michalec, immigrants at the turn of the century from
Bohemia.
After moving to Ohio, Helen's parents bought a farm in 1922 in Fowler, Ohio where Helen milked cows and worked in the fields before there was any electricity available. She excelled in school and was the Trumbull County MVP on her high school's championship basketball team. She married Eugene Reeser from Masury, Ohio, in 1933. They relocated to East Cleveland, Ohio, where they raised 2 sons and a daughter. Helen was a homemaker; volunteered with the local Red Cross during WWII; worked as a waitress at Higbee's famous Silver Grille Restaurant in downtown Cleveland; and served as PTA president. After a short stay in Arlington, Texas, the family moved to Bountiful, Utah, where Helen worked in clothing retail sales at ZCMI in Salt Lake City. In 1965, the family moved to Dearborn, Michigan where she eventually retired from Jacobson's Department Stores as Supervisor of the Children's Department. Gene and Helen made their final move in 1980 to their newly built house in Beverly Hills, Florida. Helen helped start the women's bowling league, the Classy Lassies, at the Beverly Hills Bowl and continued bowling into her nineties. She was a member of Home Extension which provided services to the community, and she retired after 15 years volunteering at Citrus Memorial Hospital.
Helen was preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Gene, in 1990; her oldest son, Gene Jr., in 1976; and her youngest son, Tom, in 2006. Also preceding her in death were all of her siblings and their spouses: Frances (Lawson) McCardel, Harry Michalec, Bill (Lillian) Michalec, Mary (Tim) Webber, Charles (Elaine) Michalec, and two infant siblings; nephews David Michalec and Larry McCardel and niece Patricia McCardel, all from Ohio.
Helen is survived by her devoted daughter and caretaker, Darlene Reeser, of Garden City, Michigan; her loving daughter-in-law, Denise Reeser, of Canton, Michigan; her grandson, Josh Reeser, of Nebraska and great grandchildren, Olivia and Jackson; her grandson, David (Shaina) Reeser and great grandchildren, Lucas and Isla, and granddaughter, Kristin Reeser, of Michigan.
She is also survived by loving nieces and nephews: Eileen (Fred) Retterer, Marg (Fred) James, Louise (Bob) Petersen, Jane (Ed) Crist, Jim (Lynn) Michalec, Becky McCardel, Madelaine Berkowitsch, Ken (Bonnie – deceased) Webber, all from Ohio, and their children and grandchildren, most of whom have been to Florida to visit "Aunt Helen." Also, cousins Veronika Mach-Itnyre from Jacksonville, Florida, and Jan (Jirina) Hurych and children from the Czech Republic
survive her.
Helen also leaves behind special friends Tommy L., Pennsylvania and Joyce W., Mary S., and Ginny O., Florida and all of her "daughters" at the Monday morning Classy Lassies' Bowling League.
Helen was a great cook and seamstress. She was admired by her family and all who knew her for her strength, wisdom, independence, smile, gentle manner, wit, and great hugs. Everyone, young and old, always bragged about her age and accomplishments.
Her last wish was "to tell everyone to be good to one another."
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Helen's honor to HPH Hospice, Attention: Donations, 12107 Majestic Blvd., Hudson, Florida 34667, (352) 527-4600.
Other options would be planting a tree in her honor or simply taking time to do Helen's favorite thing by appreciating the beauty of nature: watching the clouds, the trees, the birds, and the animals.
Private cremation arrangements have been made. A catered "Celebration of Life" Open House will be held at Helen's home on Saturday, November 14, 2015 from 1:00 to 7:00 pm.
Please RSVP your attendance to Darlene closer to the party date from November 2-6 in order to provide valid numbers to the caterer.
Cremation arrangements by the Cremation Center of the Nature Coast, Crystal River, FL.
Published in Citrus County Chronicle on Sept. 26, 2015