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Helen Henkelman

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Helen C. Henkelman, 81, of Odebolt, Iowa, passed away on Wednesday, April 26, 2023, at the Reed Place of Denison, Iowa.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Monday, May 1, at St. Martin Catholic Church in Odebolt. Father Joseph A. Dillinger will officiate. Committal services will follow at St. Martin Catholic Cemetery in Odebolt.

Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home of Odebolt is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at

Helen Cecilia Henkelman, daughter of Vincent and Caroline (Weber) Daniel, was born on March 12, 1942, in Carroll, Iowa. She grew up in Arcadia, Iowa, and received her education in Carroll, where she graduated from Kuemper Catholic High School with the Class of 1960.

After high school, Helen went on to beauty school, earning her cosmetology certificate. On Sept. 15, 1962, Helen was married to John J. Henkelman at St. John Catholic Church in Arcadia. Helen and John were blessed with three children: Joe, James and Janette. The family made their home on the family farm near Vail before relocating in 1970 to Boyer, Iowa, where they purchased the Boyer Grocery Store, which they operated until 1978.

In 1993 they moved to Odebolt, Iowa. Helen was a faithful and devoted servant of the Lord. Her family fondly remembers that you were always able to find a rosary, “Just check mom’s sweater pockets.” A devoted member of St. Martin Catholic Church of Odebolt, Helen spent her time serving when she was able on the ladies’ altar guild and taught CCD. She also volunteered her time calling bingo at the local nursing home and with the local ladies’ auxiliary.

In her free time Helen could be found in her chair with a cup of coffee enjoying one of the many game shows on TV. Helen loved a good word search, playing cards, arts and crafts, bingo, crocheting baby blankets, and in her younger years was a star bowler. She took pleasure in cooking for her family and is fondly remembered for her delectable sweet rolls on Wednesday nights and homemade potato salad just to name a few. Helen’s greatest joys in her life were her family and her faith.

Helen is survived by her children: Joe (Michele) Henkelman of Kiron, Iowa, James Henkelman of Odebolt, Iowa, and Janette (Joe) Vesterfelt Carroll, Iowa; six grandchildren: Tisha (James) Lindgren, Tanna Henkelman, Tage Henkelman, Jaylynn Vesterfelt, Jirieya Vesterfelt and Jukoie Vesterfelt; great-grandchildren: Knox, Beckham, Ava, and Jude Lindgren; siblings Ray (Jane) Daniel of Carroll, JoAnn (John) Olberding of Carroll, John (Judi) Daniel of Carroll, Albert (Mary) Daniel of Carroll, and Don (Linda) Daniel of Greenville, South Carolina; sister-in-law Alice Scheels of Bloomington, Illinois; and extended family and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents: Vincent and Caroline Daniel; husband: John Henkelman; and brothers John Daniel (in infancy) and David Daniel.

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