Helen Josephine Woods, 93, of Grangeville, passed away Dec. 6, 2018 at her daughter and son-in-law’s home.
Helen was born April 6, 1925 to Patrick and Louise (Compton) Savage in Big Timber, Mont., Sweet Grass County. At the age of three her family moved to Rapid City, S.D. and they lived there until she was 15 years old when they moved to Idaho. Helen moved many times over her life and resided in Washington and Montana. She moved to Idaho permanently in 1999 and has always said that Idaho was her home. Helen grew up during the Great Depression. In later years she often talked about how rough it was and how so many Americans lost their homes and money.
In 1941 she married Dan Leach; they had four children, Nathinal (Tanny), Waneta (Nite), Jerry, and Daniel (Danny). In 1949 she married Jerry Hellyer and they had two children, Keith and Patsy. In 1968 she married Orval Woods. They divorced after 38 years, but remained good friends until Orval’s death in 2015.
Helen was a loving mom. When we were sick she was always there for us. She kept a nice home and cooked wonderful meals. After we grew up and left home she raised and cared for a number of lap puppies to help fill the void. Mom made beautiful ceramics, which she gave to family and friends. She raised beautiful flowerbeds and lots of flowers. And she had bird feeders, which was a testament to her love of nature.
Above all she was proud of her children. We all followed our dreams and were successful in life. Mom had a strong spirit and a great sense of humor. We will miss you Mom.
Helen was preceded in death by her parents (Patrick and Louise Savage), her son Danny Leach, two sisters (Waneta Luttel and Julia Jones), a daughter-in-law (Cathy Leach), grandson (Speedy Leach) and a son-in-law (Milt Perry).
Helen is survived by her five children, Tanny Leach of Silver Springs, Nev., Waneta Perry of Lewiston, Idaho, Jerry (Dorothy) Leach of Clarkston, Wash., Keith (Donna) Hellyer of Darby, Mont., and Patsy (Miles) York of Stites; her daughter-in-law Sharon Leach of Lewiston; 16 grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.
There will be a graveside service for Helen at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, at the Kamiah City Cemetery. Following the service family and friends will gather at the home of Patsy and Miles for a meal and to share memories. Arrangements have been made through Trenary Funeral Home.