Helen Nicklas

Born: Thu., Mar. 25, 1926
Died: Sat., Jan. 17, 2015

Graveside Service

11:00 AM Sat., Jan. 24, 2015
Location: Rest Haven Memorial Park

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Helen Dolson Lawrence Nicklas of Roanoke, VA died peacefully at her home with family and friends by her side on Saturday, January 17, 2015.   She was 88.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Dr. Gilbert L. “Nick” Nicklas, Sr. and her son, Gilbert L. “Nick” Nicklas, Jr.  Left to cherish her memory are her son Michael H. Nicklas (Susan Luster) of Cary, NC; her son Steven D. Nicklas of Dawsonville, GA; her daughter Leena N. Bolin (Delmas) of Roanoke, VA; her sister Carol Nevill (Ron) of Cornelius, NC; her daughter-in-law Tita Nicklas of West Yellowstone, MT; her grandsons Nicholas and John Bolin of Roanoke, VA; her grandson James Nicklas and granddaughter Brandi Nicklas of Dawsonville, GA; and many nieces and nephews.

Helen was born on March 25, 1926 at the home of her great grandmother in Glenside, PA and was the eldest daughter of Dr. Henry D. and Helen N. Lawrence.  She attended the Shippen School for Girls in Lancaster, PA which admitted boys for the first time the year she graduated (1944) and became Lancaster Country Day School.   She later attended Edgewood Park in Briarclifif Manor, NY, a small college for girls where she studied to be a medical assistant, training which prepared her to assist her husband at the start of his medical practice career in Avis, PA several years later.

Helen met the man she would marry, Gilbert “Nick” Nicklas, while she was a senior at Lancaster Country Day School.  He was a student at near-by Franklin and Marshall College which was an all-boys school at the time.  There were dances at F&M, but the young ladies had to be invited from the surrounding schools.  Her future husband danced with three Helens the night they met, but only one stole his heart.  They were married two years later after she had graduated from Edgewood and he from F&M. 

Helen’s greatest joy was her family.  She was blessed with 55 years together with the love of her life, and together with him raised four children.  Most of her married life was spent in Crestmont, a small community of homes just outside Woolrich, PA.  A more devoted wife and mother you could never find.   She dedicated herself to taking care of her family and could always be found shuttling a child here or there, attending every sporting event, play or concert any of her children were ever involved in, making decorations for various family and community parties, cooking fabulous food for family and friends, and generally making a house into a home filled with beauty and love. She loved to travel and was blessed with the opportunity to see much of the world with her family.  She was gifted in the now nearly lost art of flower arranging and eventually rose to the position of Garden Club Grand Judge.  Her creations were always stunning and brought great pleasure to those who were able to enjoy them.  She enjoyed making her corner of the world a more beautiful place to be.

Helen and Nick relocated to Apex, NC after his retirement in 1996 so they could be closer to at least one of their children who had scattered across the country by then.  They enjoyed several years together there until the death of her beloved Nick in 2001. The following year she moved to Roanoke, VA to be closer to her daughter and eventually moved in with her and her family in 2005.  It was there she made her home until her death.  Failing health made her later years more difficult, but she still found ways to reach out and touch the lives of those she loved. 

Helen’s family would like to thank the amazing women from Good Samaritan Hospice who made her final months more comfortable, especially Carmen, Lorri, Christie, Barbara, Sharon, Janet and Kathy.  Thank you too, to Chris and Marci who gave reassurance and guidance to her uncertain family several times in her last days.

Initial arrangements have been made by Oakey’s South Chapel in Roanoke, VA., with a funeral service to be held at 10:00 am there on Friday, January 23, 2015. A graveside funeral service will be held on Saturday, January 24, 2015 at 11:00 am at the Rest Haven Memorial Park 47 Rest Haven Drive, Rest Haven, PA.  Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Yost-Gedon Funeral Home & Cremation Services, LLC. 121 West Main Street, Lock Haven, PA.  Online thoughts and memories can be made at www.yost-gedonfuneralhome.com.

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Tricia Bartges Keener
   Posted Mon January 26, 2015
Dear Mike, Steve & Leena:

I am so very sorry to hear about the passing of Aunt Helen. She was such a special lady in my life since I was a small child. Even after my parents passed away, I corresponded with her each year at Christmas. I have many fond memories of Aunt Helen, Uncle Nick and your family and I will truly miss her! My heart and prayers go out to you.

Love you all,
Tricia Bartges Keener

Mrs. Bruce Fenstamaker Jr
   Posted Sat January 31, 2015
Dear Nichols Family,

I was so sorry to hear of your mother's passing. My son Bruce cared a great deal for her.

Mrs. Linda Bergan
   Posted Sat February 14, 2015
Dear Steve,
We are so sorry to hear of your mother's passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
Linda and Eric

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