Helen Ruth Vannier, 89, of Bluffs, and formerly of McDonough County, passed away at 2:13 a.m. Monday, Dec. 3, 2012, in Jacksonville.
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She was born Dec. 20, 1922, in Macomb, to Bennie and Bessie Hillyer Fowler. She first married Donald Sapp in 1943. He passed away in 1953. She later married Bernard Vannier in 1961, and he also preceded her in death in 1979.
She is also preceded in death by her parents; two sisters, Evelyn Fowler and Esther Fowler Willey; and one stepdaughter, Gloria Teaney.
Surviving are two daughters, Marnetta (Jerry) Gregory of Jacksonville and Angela (William) Kauffman of Bluffs; three sons, Jerry (Linda) Sapp of Bluffs, Wendell (Carol) Sapp of St. Louis and Konrad (Barb) Sapp of Bluffs; stepchildren, William (Kim) Vannier of Meredosia, James (Debbie) Vannier of Jacksonville, Daniel (Dawn) Vannier of Meredosia, Kathy (John) Brown of Vinita, Okla., and LouAnn (Fred) Elliott of Jacksonville; 11 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; several stepgrandchildren and stepgreat-grandchildren; four brothers, Howard "Lawson" Fowler of Industry, Kennard (Abbey) Fowler of Rushville, Keros (Linda) Fowler of Macomb and Gary (Sandra) Fowler of Macomb; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Helen lived in the Gin Ridge area until she moved to Bluffs in 1954. She was a graduate of WIU Teachers College and was an elementary school teacher retiring from Bluffs School District after 26 years. She was a member and active in the ladies bible study at Bluffs Baptist Church.
Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday at University Baptist Church with the Reverend Wendell Sapp officiating. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m Wednesday at the church. Burial will be at Blackburn Cemetery near Brooklyn. Memorials may be made to Inner City Ministries for Serenity Lake Retreat, 5783 Lindell Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63112. You may leave condolences and sign the guest book online at clugston-tibbittsfh.com.
Published in Jacksonville Journal-Courier on Dec. 4, 2012