Daniel Ryan Helmick, 73, of Williamsburg, passed away Sept. 20, 2012. |
He was a journeyman mold maker for Owens-Illinois from 1961 until his retirement in 2001, with a perfect attendance record spanning four decades. His tenure with the bottler included three years in Alton IL and 16 years in Durham NC before transferring to the Toano plant in 1980, where he worked 11 years.
Born July 14, 1939, and raised in Fairmont, WV, Daniel was the first born and son of the late Marion Helmick and Grace Armbruster-Helmick. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Mary M. "Mickie" Misco-Helmick of Williamsburg and Fairmont, and one son, James A. Helmick of South Riding, VA. He was the oldest of four siblings and is survived by his sister, Mary R. McFarland of Fairmont and her son, Patrick McFarland of Fairmont, sister, Barbara Matheny of Lake Milton OH and brother, Edward Helmick of Williamsburg.
Mr. Helmick was a 1957 graduate of St. Peter's Catholic High and followed up his education with two years vocational training in Chicago. He served in the U.S. Army Reserves for six months in 1959 before marrying and settling down in his career and starting a family.
Dan was devoted not only to his wife and family but to anyone he deemed part of his expanded family of friends, colleagues and neighbors. He always lent a hand to anyone in need without question and was always a self-prescribed, people's man. He was vocal and passionate about supporting the common working man in our society, and as a consequence, was actively involved in the American Flint Glass Workers Union, where he served on the board of his local chapter.
Throughout his life, he was actively involved in local community charity efforts as well as recycling promotion and support for the glass industry. He actively served on the board for the Kristiansand Homeowners Community Association and took the lead in the planning, design building, and continual maintenance of the community's park area shelters and playgrounds to include community events and in rallying volunteers to be engaged and take pride in their neighborhood.
His passions ranged from being an avid CB Radio novice in the late 1960s and early 1970s, to playing guitar, photography, carpentry and mechanics. Being social and working with his hands was always ingrained in his daily life. He was actively involved with a social online Internet group of age 40+ members called the "Tree House" and took lead in planning annual trips for the group's members to different locations around the country. "Dan the Man , " as he was affectionately called by friends and family , will always be fondly remembered and loved in our hearts. He will be missed greatly.
Viewing will be held at Nelsen Funeral Home, 3785 Strawberry Plains Rd., Williamsburg from 6-8 p.m. Sunday, Sept 23. A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 11 a.m. Monday, Sept. 24, at St. Olaf Catholic Church, 104 Norge Lane, Norge, with burial following at Williamsburg Memorial Park. A reception will be held at St. Olaf at 1 p.m. Condolences can be registered at www.nelsencares.com.
Published in Virginia Gazette from Sept. 22 to Oct. 21, 2012