Washington Evening Journal
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Neighbors Growing Together | May 25, 2017

Helen Odell

May 15, 2017
Helen Odell

YODER, Oregon — Helen Mae Liechty Odell, 79, of Oregon City, Oregon, died Thursday, March 16, 2017, in Marquis Memory Care Unit in Oregon City, Oregon.

A memorial service was held at 11 a.m., Saturday, April 29, at Smyrna United Church of Christ in Yoder, Oregon. Remembrances can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, Bristol Hospice, United Church of Christ or a charity of choice.

Mrs. Odell was born Jan. 11, 1938, in Winfield, the daughter of Paul Silas Liechty and Eda Barbara (Conrad) Liechty. She married Charles “Charlie” Wayne Odell on Oct. 15, 1960, in Winfield.

She graduated from Crawfordsville High School in 1956, where she was known as “Leaky” and “Generally speaking, she’s generally speaking.” She participated in glee club, band, class plays, and basketball. She graduated in 1960 from Mercy Hospital School of Nursing in Burlington. While in Burlington, she met her future husband. Her nursing career was spent working at the State Hospital in Mount Pleasant, Veterans Hospital in Iowa City, and ended at the Portland VA Hospital in Portland, Oregon, in 1996, when she retired. She worked many years in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit, where she worked mostly the night shift. Sleep was often sacrificed to be with family and attend school events with her children. She and her husband drove to Oregon in 1968, with their three children and her parents, on vacation. They fell in love with the Pacific Northwest. In 1969 they moved their family, her parents, her brother Donald and family, and her sister Mary. She was known for her baking, which was always a part of family dinners and birthdays and other family-and-friend occasions. She was a longtime member of Smyrna United Church of Christ, and her homemade cinnamon rolls could be counted on at the annual church auction. She was an avid reader, and gardened and canned from her own garden as well as local produce. She could always be counted on to be cheering on the OSU Beavers, the Iowa Hawkeyes and Canby sports her children were participating in. She was well known for having an extra sandwich for a “starving” wrestler. Family vacations included lots of camping, trips to the Oregon coast, drives around Mount Hood, sunning in the pool at Kah Nee Ta and traveling to Iowa visiting family and friends. After retirement, she and her husband spent nearly 20 years of traveling with their fifth wheel around the United States, visiting family and friends. Those travels included her annual alumni class and nursing school reunions.

Surviving are her husband of 56 years, Charles; four children, Sarah of Oregon City, Oregon, Timothy and wife Nadine of Milwaukie, Oregon, Thomas and wife Kristin of Oregon City, and Mark and wife Crista of Canby, Oregon; nine grandchildren; one sister, Dorothy Pforts of Washington; one sister-in-law, Murlene (Mrs. Donald) Liechty of Molalla, Oregon; and several generations of nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Paul, and Eda; two sisters, Mary Liechty, and Kathryn (Mrs. Eugene) Fleenor; and one brother, Donald Liechty.

 

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