Our mother, Helen O. Wilson Howland, 99, left this world April 27, 2015 to be with her beloved late husband, Norman H. Howland, who passed away in 1957.
She is survived by their daughters, Virginia Smith (Tom Bevens) of Ohio, Kathleen Chaffee (George) of Pennsylvania, Norma Swarup of California (the late Vishnu Swarup), and Carol Howell (John) of Lansing; grandchildren, Kenneth Smith (Debbie),Â Roxanne Smith (Tom Giolekas), Kristian Smith (Cate), Rebecca Knorek (Dan), Gregory Chaffee, Melissa Liskey (Larry), Tamara Snyder (Matt), Heather Lehman (Matt), Jason Howell (Paula) and Loralee Howell. She is also survived by 16 great grandchildren and her long-time best friends, Ethel and Stanley Bothwell. Â In addition to her parents and her husband, Helen was preceded in death by her stepbrother, Arthur Wilson (Ruth), brother, Clarence WilsonÂ (Bea),Â brother-in-law, Winfred HowlandÂ (Clara), and sister-in-law, Helen Howland Moore (Jimmy).
Helen was born in Ithaca on March 8, 1916 to the late Ora Wilson and Nellie Owen Wilson. She graduated from Ithaca High School and attended Cortland State University where she received both her BS and MS in Education.Â Helen subbed for 18 years and then in 1957 she was hired by Lansing Elementary School to teach 4th grade.Â Â She attended night school at Cortland, received her MS degree and continued to attend college with 82 credit hours beyond her bachelor.Â She taught 4th and 5th grades for 27 years and retired from teaching in 1983. Â She served as officer and NYS delegate in both the PTA and the Faculty Assoc.
Helen loved to travel and she visited all 50 states, most of Canada, the Canary and Galapagos Islands, 10 Caribbean Islands and 50Â other countries. She took a sabbatical over four summers taking classes at the University of Americas in Mexico City, the University of Hawaii, and the University of Alaska and in Europe.
She was a member of the West Groton Church for 75 years,Â Grange for 50 years,Â choir for 40 years, Sunday school teacher 25 years and a member of two golf leagues and 3 bowling leagues over a span of 40 years. Helen volunteered for over 25 years at the Retired Senior Volunteer Program Information & Referral in Ithaca. She loved to play any and all games and she always played to win. Â She loved to crochet; she made 10 afghans for each of her grandchildren. Helen loved her children and extended family. Helen belonged to the Singing Swinging Sweethearts and enjoyed being in the Red Hat Society of Ithaca.
Family will be present to receive friends from noon to 2 pm, on June 6, 2015, at West Groton Bible Church, corner of Cobb St and West Groton Rd, followed by a funeral service at 2 pm, officiated by PastorÂ Shawn Willson. Â Memorial contributions may be directed toÂ West Groton Bible Church, 858 Cobb St. Groton, NY 13073, LCH Scholarship Fund or charity of your choice.
Lansing Funeral Home is assisting the family.