Helen June Jehring
August 2, 1924 - September 8, 2018
Farm Girl, University Graduate, Medical Professional, Army Cadet,
Wife, Mother, Grandmother, Great-Grandmother, and Caring Friend
Helen June Jehring, 94 years young, of Naples, Florida, citizen of the senior retirement community of Lely Palms in Naples departed early Saturday afternoon, September 8th, 2018. Helen's brave and giving spirit joins her husband, Robert Bernard Jehring, who departed June 10th, 2000 from Naples, FL. The loving couple of Helen and Bob enjoyed 53 years of marriage on this Earth.
She was born Helen June Larsen on August 2, 1924, Riverton Township, Spencer, Clay County, Iowa in the growing Midwestern U.S. farm community in the northwest corner of Iowa. Helen was the youngest of eight children of Danish immigrant parents, Peder "Peter' Larsen and Johanne "Hannah" (maiden name Willadsen) Larsen. Her father, Peder, passed away tragically while Helen was only two months old. So the early years of this young, tall and slender, intelligent, blonde-haired, blue-eyed woman was shaped primarily by her fearless Danish American widowed mother along with the interaction and care by Helen's siblings: Willie, Nora, Annie, Nettie, Carl, Arnie, and Violet. The Larsen family proved themselves to be survivors in this close matriarch led family within the challenging backdrop of farm immigrants in the Midwest to become a new generation of American born. Helen was the last surviving sibling of this Larsen family generation.
Helen's intellectual ambitions to explore beyond Midwest farming life led her to pursue science and medical education at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. Following her awarded Pre-Med Bachelor of Science degree and nursing education, she became a registered nurse as well as enlisting in United States Cadet Nurse Corps. In the backdrop of World War II, Helen became head of nurses at the University Hospital of Iowa on the floor of Gynecology and Obstetrics. During this time, a very bright, athletic, and determined law graduate student Robert Jehring courted Helen. His secret to winning her acceptance of his marriage proposal was his idealistic honest character, his skill of persuasion, and his ability to make Helen laugh. Helen and Bob were married on October 25, 1947 surrounded by immediate family and a few close friends in the rustic log chapel at Bob's pre-law alma mater at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. On the Saturday of the small humble wedding far from Iowa, Bob and Helen’s guests were provided football tickets to the Notre Dame vs. Iowa football game. After football half-time Helen and Bob traveled to Chicago for their honeymoon at the Edgewater Beach Hotel.
Helen and Bob soon began their life together in Bob's hometown of Muscatine, Iowa which is a southeast river town in Iowa along the Mississippi River. Soon after the start of their lives together, Helen gave birth to twin boys in November1948 as well as following one year later in December1949 with birth to another son. Responsibility of raising these three baby boys weighed heavily upon Helen and Bob resulting in Helen giving up her professional nursing career so Helen could give her full attention to raising these three children as well as adding four subsequent children. Meanwhile, her husband gave himself to the sacrifice of long hours of work to establish his law firm of honest character in order to financially support growing family allowing Helen's full attention to raising their sons. These seven sons are now readily recognized by their shared love of family.
Although life for Helen and Bob included many times of personal sacrifice and many times of diaper changing for their large family by them both, Helen and Bob did make time for “just the two of them”. Helen traveled to many places in the United States including Hawaii as well as wonderful places around this world. Helen visited the following places, but not limited to: Canada, Mexico, Caribbean Islands, Russia, China, Japan, and most of countries in Western Europe including Denmark. Helen’s favorite foreign city to visit was London especially for its theatres.
After the seven Jehring boys were grown men, Helen and Bob moved from Iowa and actively retired while forming numerous friendships with people in the Naples, Florida community. Helen enjoyed and supported many social activities in Naples, FL before and after Bob departed. She was known to help organize and lead friendly competitive social events such as golfing and card playing. Notably, she competitively won the Naples regional women's octogenarian golf title for several years while in her 80's. While in her 90's, she was a very talented competitor in card games such as Bridge and Spite & Malice at the senior retirement community of Lely Palms in Naples. Moreover, she remained very congenial and approachable with new members to senior retirement, excellent conversationalist on many topics due to her education and worldly experiences, reasonably open and respectful to various viewpoints, mentally sharp and positive. Helen Jehring greeted and embraced life while giving much of herself to others. She was an excellent listener with a twinkle in her gentle piercing blue eyes.
Helen’s sons can be recognized as men having strong independent character as well as being all very different from each other. Each son was raised by Helen and encouraged to grow up true to themselves in their own way. Helen exemplified wisdom and great understanding that motherhood is often about guiding, and not controlling, the inner potential of each child. All seven of Helen’s sons will be attending the Catholic Mass service to honor Helen’s very full life.
Helen was mother, grandmother and great-grandmother to 47 currently living descendants which includes her sons (7) and living spouses (6), grandchildren (16) and their spouses (9), and great-grandchildren (9). Names of sons and their spouses are as follows: George Patrick Jehring and Patricia Nemeth [Wisconsin residents], Frederick Michael Jehring [Nevada resident] and Pamela Metcalf (first marriage) and Harriet Jacobowitz (second marriage and now departed), Thomas Douglas Jehring and Kathy Jo Garvin [Florida residents], Robert Louis Jehring and Joan Sauter [Florida residents], John Randall Jehring and Jan McTiernan [New York residents], Stephen James Jehring and Linda Avesing [Iowa residents], and Joseph Arthur Jehring and Carolyn Lopez [Texas residents].
The funeral mass for Helen June Jehring will be on Monday, September 17, 2018, 10:00AM at St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church, 5130 Rattlesnake Hammock Road, Naples, 34113. Final committal is private.