Helen Louise Claeys, 84, of Geneseo, formerly of Atkinson, passed away Wednesday, November 08, 2017 at Hammond Henry Hospital in Geneseo, IL. The funeral mass will be held at 10:00 a.m on Saturday, November 11, 2017, at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Atkinson. Father Duane Jack will celebrate. Burial will follow at St. Anthony Cemetery. Visitation will take place Friday, November 10, at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, Atkinson, from 5:00-7:00 p.m., where the Rosary will be recited at 4:30 p.m. Memorials may be left to the Helen Louise Claeys Memorial Fund.
Helen was born on February 22, 1933, the daughter of Charles E. and Sophie C. (Verkruyse) Claeys, in Atkinson, IL. She graduated from Atkinson High School with the class of 1951 and continued her education by taking night classes to achieve her CPS (Certified Professional Secretary). In conjunction to her CPS, Helen was part of the National Secretary’s Association. She worked for Deere & Company as an export office staff supervisor for 35 years, from which she retired. Helen was a lifetime member of St. Anthony Catholic Church, where she was a Parish Council Member for 25 years and was a member and past President of the Altar and Rosary Society. She was also a member of the John Deere Ladies Retirees and Friends of Trinity Hospital, where she served as a past President for both of these organizations. Helen was a member of the Hammond Henry Hospital Auxiliary. Helen loved to travel and made quite the extensive hobby out of doing it. She enjoyed travelling both domestically and internationally. Most of all, Helen loved her family. She always watched her nieces and nephews play sports, and looked forward to all family gatherings.
Those left to cherish her memory include her brother-in-law, Merrill Taber, sister-in-law, Mary Helen Claeys, and her nieces and nephews: Tina (Bob) Floming, Kim (Marv) VerStraete, Brenda (Gary) Gripp, Mike (Pat) Taber, Matt Claeys, Anita Brieser-Park, Andy (Tracy) Claeys, Ann (Ron) DeSmith, Beth (Kurt) Roesner, Joe (Amy) Claeys, Mark Taber, Dave (Jen) Claeys, Tonya Taber, Luke (Christy) Claeys, and Lin (Justin) Ebbert, along with her 36 great-nieces and nephews, and 20 great-great-nieces and nephews.
Helen was preceded in death by her parents, sister, Marian Taber, brother, Charles H. (Mary Helen) Claeys, nephew-in-law Christopher Brieser, and great-great-niece, Emma VerStraete.