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Beloved mother and grandmother Helen Jennestad Luvaas passed away peacefully with her family and friends by her side in Bellevue, Washington, on June 14, 2013.
Helen was born to Hannah and Ole Jennestad on December 7, 1917, in Sandpoint, Idaho.
Her sister, Edith Jennestad, preceded her in death in 2009.
Helen graduated from Sandpoint High School in 1935 and went on to attend the University of Idaho, where she met the love of her life, Bernard Luvaas. He proposed on their second date, but Helen insisted on teaching school in Hayden Lake, Idaho, before they married.
She taught first and second grade at Hayden Lake Elementary. She had 35 students in her class.
She continued to date Bernard and finally married him June 24, 1941.
After their marriage, they moved to Everett, Washington, where she was a secretary and Bernie worked in the shipyard. They then moved to Port Angeles, where they raised their two daughters, Sharron Murray and Pamela Lovell.
When her daughters were in school, she went back to work this time as a sales associate at Riedel's Department Store as well as Brown's Rexall Drug. She did this for many years.
They lived in Port Angeles until 1979, when they moved to Magnolia in Seattle, Washington, so they could be closer to their daughters and three grandchildren. Bernard passed away in 1989, and Helen remained active in Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church, the Ballard Lady Lions Club and the Magnolia Women's Club.
She finally decided in 2000 to move to a retirement community at The Gardens at Town Square in Bellevue, Washington, where she lived until December 2012.
She then moved to the Emeritus Assisted Living Facility in Bellevue for the last six months of her life. There, she was surrounded by the wonderful, caring staff who took care of her as if she were family.
We would like to thank them for taking such loving care of our mother in her last days.
She is survived by her daughters, Sharron Murray and Pam (Dean) Lovell; and grandchildren Erin Murray, Courtney Lovell (Jordan) Fezler and Ryan (Kate) Lovell.
In her later years, she enjoyed being an important part of many family events, such as the weddings of her grandchildren and many holidays.
She hosted her lovely 95th birthday party December 7, 2012, at her home at The Gardens at Town Square with 25 guests in attendance. She also received nearly 100 cards and letters from friends and family who were unable to attend.
A celebration-of-life service and luncheon were held at the home of Pam and Dean Lovell with 45 guests in attendance. Dr. Jim Berkley, formerly of Port Angeles, officiated the service.
Her deep faith in God sustained her as her health declined. She was ready to meet her Lord. Knowing this gives much comfort and peace to her family in their time of sadness.
Published in The Peninsula Daily News on Sept. 15, 2013