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HELEN VERHOEF Obituary pic


Date of Passing: May 14, 2019

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With dignity and grace, Helen (63) passed away with loved ones by her side on May 14, 2019 at Riverview Health Centre. Her courageous battle with ALS came to an end.
Helen leaves behind her three children, Chris (Ashley), Bob and Dan (Vanessa), grandchildren, Willow and Isabella and John, the father of her children. She is also survived by her father Andrij, brother Ihor (Lorraine), sister Mary and predeceased by her mother Pearl in 2013. She is also mourned by her nieces, Alexandra (Evan) and Daniela (Sean), cousins, Irene Nazarewich, Bohdan (Irene) Waplak, Rev. Jozef (Elizabeth) Zyla (Toronto) and their families, as well as multiple cousins in Ukraine and France.
Helen was an exceptional, strong, loving and compassionate woman. She grew up in Winnipeg's North End and was raised in the Ukrainian community. She attended St. Andrew's Ukrainian Catholic Church and cultural activities at Institute Prosvita with the Ukrainian Youth Association "CYM". Helen's public education started at William Whyte School and ended at St. John's High School.
She went on to graduate from nursing school at St. Boniface Hospital (1976). She started her career at St. Boniface and worked there for four years before moving on to Seven Oaks General Hospital where she worked from 1980 to 2015. Helen found her place working in the emergency department. She enjoyed the daily challenges of the role and being able to focus on caring for those most vulnerable. Many of the nurses and doctors she worked with during her 35 years at the hospital became lifelong friends.
Helen's most important role was raising and supporting her three boys, later on, as a single parent. She was blessed with two grandchildren that brought her much joy. Helen particularly enjoyed spending time with "the girls", Rose, Angela, Mary, Barbara, Gayle, Monica, Bev, Christine and Ana, who stayed by her side throughout her life and cherished their sisterhood relationship.
Helen's family would like to thank the ALS Society for their support. Also the nurses and staff on 3E Palliative Care at the Riverview Health Centre for their care and compassion. For all the visitors that came to spend time with Helen, she's grateful for having each one of them in their life. The family would also like to share a special appreciation to the support provided by Vanessa who stayed home to take care of Helen while she was still able to live there.
In lieu of flowers, the family graciously requests donations be made to the ALS Society of Manitoba or a charity of their choice.
Her Celebration of Life reception will be held later at a private family gathering.

Khrystos Voskres!

Korban Funeral Chapel
(204) 956-2193

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on May 18, 2019

Condolences & Memories (1 entries)

  • Helen and I became co-workers first, eventually, a wonderful friendship developed. She would come to my home and Tony would sit with her and discuss all current affairs. Tony loved Helen's Demeanor and Intelligence. Tony would make us lunch as we visited and on the visit's that occurred while Tony was working Helen and I would go for a ride and have lunch along the way. Pine Ridge Hollow was one of our favorite spots. Helen never told anyone what she was feeling or if she was concerned about anyone. In fact, when she started having problems with her speech, she thought I was making to much of it. Then came the news that she had an aggressive form of ALS. I was the first person she told, I tried to be positive while we spoke, but the second I was alone I cried like a baby in my husband's arms for hours. My friend, my dear friend who helped me get through the hardest time of my life. My friend who would sit with me and talk while I recovered from surgery and the death of my little angel. Helen was really sick and there was nothing I could do to help her but spend time with her. Last fall when we went off to Florida for the winter I was heartbroken and afraid that this would be the last time I would see Helen. She assured me that she would be here when I got back and she was. Helen was a woman of strong character and she was a woman of her word. If you were a friend of Helen's she would do anything for you. Helen was not only my friend she was a sister to me. Helen earned her wings while she was on this earth, all she was waiting for was the day that God would take her home. Helen is home and I hope she sends me a butterfly once in a while so I will know that she is visiting me. God Bless you, Helen we will meet again my dear friend. My heartfelt condolences to Helen's Family. - Posted by: Ana Herntier (Friend & Co-Worker) on: May 18, 2019

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