George Maris Helman
MTHS Class of 1946

George Maris Helman, 86, of Villa Ridge passed away Wednesday, April 30, 2014, at his home.

He was born in 1928 at the family home in Villa Ridge to Earl and Mary Helman. He was married to Flora Bridges Helman in 1946. They celebrated 67 years of marriage. They had two sons, David and Paul Helman.

George is survived by his wife, Flora Bridges Helman of Villa Ridge; a son, David (Emily) Helman of Villa Ridge; a daughter-in-law, Debbie Helman Brown and Sam Brown of Villa Ridge; five grandchildren, David Ashley (Jennifer) Helman, Nichole (Nathan) Bennett, Darrell (Polly) Malone, Billie (Blaine) Holshouser and Bobby (Leslie) Helman; 11 great-grandchildren; and a family member, William Endicott.

He was preceded in death by a son, Paul Helman; and a grandson, Andy Helman.

George was a lifelong member of Villa Ridge Union Church. He served on the church board as a deacon, a trustee and Sunday school superintendent. He was a lifelong farmer and an avid gardener.

He served on the Fruit Belt Service Co. Board, Pulaski County Soil and Water Conservation District Board, Pulaski-Alexander Extension Council Board, Pulaski County Housing Authority Board, Pulaski County ASCS Board, Shawnee Community College Board of Trustees, Farm Credit Service of Southern Illinois Board of Directors and Cairo City Cemetery Board.

George received the Master Farmer Award from Illinois Prairie Farmer in 1985. He also received the Outstanding Conservation Farmer Award and the Outstanding Resource Conservation Merit Award from the Pulaski Alexander Soil and Water Conservation District.

Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until service time Saturday at Villa Ridge Union Church.

The funeral will be at 1 p.m. Saturday at the church, with the Revs. Larry Buckles and Larry Miller officiating. Interment will be in Green Lawn Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Villa Ridge.

Jones Funeral Home in Villa Ridge is in charge of arrangements.

Memorials may be given to Andy Helman Scholarship or the donor's choice in memory of George Helman.