Helena Willis Eiden, a registered nurse and WWII Navy veteran, died Monday, February 11, 2013, in Wilmington, NC. She was 95 years old.

The cause of death was Alzheimer's Disease, which had substantial impact on Mrs. Eiden's health for almost a decade.

Helena Willis was the oldest girl among 8 children of Banister Augustus "Gus" Willis and Ellen Smith Willis in Onslow County, North Carolina. She was born August 8, 1917,and grew up on the family farm. After graduation from high school in Jacksonville, NC, she received her nursing training at James Walker Memorial Hospital School of Nursing in Wilmington, graduating in the class of 1941 and earning her R.N. that same year. She completed her public health nursing training in 1942 at UNC and worked as a public health nurse in Onslow County before joining the U.S. Navy Nurse Corps in 1943. After service in the Pacific aboard the hospital ship, USS Repose, LT JG Willis was honorably discharged from active duty in 1946.

Until onset of Alzheimer's Disease, Mrs. Eiden was an active member of the Catholic Daughters of the Americas while a parishioner at St. Mary Catholic Church in Wilmington and later at Infant of Prague Church in Jacksonville. She also volunteered with the American Red Cross, participating in hurricane relief and providing nursing services during community events.

Mrs. Eiden last worked as a registered nurse at Cape Fear Memorial Hospital in Wilmington.

Helena Willis was married to Joseph John Eiden on February 14, 1947. Her husband died in February 1975. Mrs. Eiden is survived by two sons, Joseph J. Eiden, Jr. and wife, Holly, and Thomas Willis Eiden; one granddaughter, Julia Elizabeth Eiden; two sisters, Roberta Willis Morton and Kate Whitney, and numerous nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 2 pm Friday, February 15, 2013, at Andrews Valley Chapel, 4108 South College Road, with Rev. Bob Kus officiating. Prior to the service on Friday, the family will receive friends from 1 pm until the service hour. Interment will follow in Oakdale Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be considered to The Johns Hopkins University Memory and Alzheimer's Treatment Center, 5300 Alpha Commons Dr., Floor 4, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Baltimore, MD 21224.

Condolences may be sent to the family at www.andrewsmortuary.com

Andrews Valley Chapel

Online condolences at StarNewsOnline.com

Published in the Wilmington Star-News from Feb. 14 to Feb. 15, 2013