Most recent happening gets top billing
Otherwise, the year is in chronological order
I am almost two years behind on events, but
hope to get busy on it again, soon.
There should be a block table to click on here
with a commercial that Amy was in.  She has the dark hair

September 10, 2017,
Michael called us at the height of Hurricane Irma
He and Maria had gone to Europe for their vacation
Paris, London and Dublin
While they were at the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland,
Michael proposed to Maria.
He called Elise and then me to ask us to pass the word.
Not sure when and where the wedding will be, Tampa or New York City.
Google has sent Michael on assignments from Canada to Australia,
 and then Brazil when they get back to the USA.
Then, they will be home for Christmas so, they are busy, busy.
Picture of the Cliffs and then a photo of Michael and Maria
Then, below that is the news on Daniel and Ellen3, then Amy.

September 12, 2017 ????
Ireland at the Cliffs
Michael proposed to Maria.

June 28, 2015
They met at Florida State University.
Michael graduated in 2014 and Maria in 2015,

and she joined Michael in New York City.
Michael & Maria at a family member's wedding

 February 03, 2017
Daniel and Ellen3
 Daniel & Ellen3 called today.  Daniel proposed to Ellen.
Gave her an engagement ring - from Tiffany's, yet. 
  Ellen posted on Facebook, after they had told all of the families about it.

"Got Engaged to Daniel Helfrich

I think we make a pretty great team. Watch out world"
Ellen was accepted by and is currently attending
her alma mater UF again - working on her
Physician's Assistant Degree to be completed in 2019.
So, the wedding will not be until at least 2019.
They dated while attending University of Florida,
 graduating a year apart, just like Michael and Maria.
Michael and Daniel have always been close first cousins.

September - 2017
Now that Amy has completed her internship,
and has been accepted as a
Professional Dancer with the
American Contemporary Ballet in Los Angeles,
she will be performing in 
The Nutcracker in December
Bil and Yumi are flying out to see her perform
Christmas Eve.

Chuck 1932 and Jackie 1934
Bill/1953 - Les/1957 - Ron/1958 - Paul/1959

When music comes to an end, just click "refresh" to enjoy it again.

The 2013 Newsletter did not get finished with all we had going on, so I
am making an attempt to bring 2013 to 2017 up to date on the highlights
of all of our Helfrich-Josey families.
I know that this is a book, so if you want to read one year's worth each day,
about ten to fifteen minutes, you can finish it in 4-5 days.  I hope you
find some of it of some interest.

Just FYI, this will probably be my last Newsletter, for many, many reasons.
A lot of time, thought, energy and  love went into all of them, but everything has an ending.
Each year goes from beginning to end.

1. Chuck & Jackie
2. Bill & Yumi - Amy
3. Les & Jan
Rebeka & Kevin - Thaddius - Hadrian
Heather & Jesse
4. Ron & Elise
Lauren & Mina
Michael & Maria
5. Paul & Ellen1 
Daniel & Ellen3

6.  David - Chuck's nephew, first cousin to Bill, Les, Ron, & Paul.
He just relocated from Washington, DC to Tampa and is teaching at
the school Daniel and Julia attended.

Ellen1's sister has a daughter, Ellen2, Daniel's girl friend is Ellen3, thus the # 's

February 25, 2017
This should go further down to be in sequence, but it deserves the

Since Les will be 60 years old in July, he is passing his crown down to another generation.
He was the champion fund raiser all of the years he participated.

Les and his court of exchange students
 (one from South Africa, one from Austria, & two from Brazil)
are ready to jump into 32 degree water in AK for

Facebook Members - About a 20 second video
Found this picture and
had to post it again
1960 - L-R - Bill-Les-Paul-Ron
The little darling with the ball is
my sister's son, Michael
All redheads

1962 - Paul's 3rd birthday
Ron is helping with blowing

Headed to the Gasparilla Parade &
none too happy about it!
Ron - Bill - Les - Paul

2011 - Also, I found this one - Cracker Barrel -- Tampa
Paul - Chuck - Ron - Michael - Daniel

Showing off that pretty red velvet
cake from every angle.
Nice birthday - thanks everyone

Lauren & Mina put this "Grammy Cake" on Facebook. 
I loved both cakes.

Lauren recently left her 6 year career with DriveTime Car Sales for a better opportunity with
Cranial Technologies. She runs the office in the Tampa clinic, and is also being trained as the
imaging specialist for the location. The company's only specialty is treating babies who have
plagiocephaly (flat head syndrome), and treatment is with a custom made DOC band.
Lauren is loving working with babies and being able to spend more time at home with
 Mina and their dogs (Morgan and Savannah).
Mina has been working as an aircraft engineer at Aerosonic for the past year.
 He faces new challenges every day designing parts for aircraft,
and leads a team of mechanical engineers to produce a completed product.
He loves his job and definitely takes pride in his work. 

January - 2017
Amy (center) did her first modeling ad/commercial
Working at two jobs, this and ballet
Lorac Cosmetics California Dreaming Campaign�

BULLETIN - 02-03-2017
Daniel & Ellen3 called today.  Daniel proposed to Ellen.
Gave her an engagement ring - from Tiffany's, yet. 
  Ellen posted on Facebook, after they had told all of the families about it.

"Got Engaged to Daniel Helfrich

I think we make a pretty great team. Watch out world"
The wedding will be after Ellen gets her Physician's Assistant Degree in 2019.

Michael just posted on Facebook:

"It's official! I'm going to start my first flight class for
my pilot's license on February 4, while I'm in Mountain View/San Francisco.
So excited!!!"

Michael:  Your word is as good as GOLD

What a weekend... Saturday, I completed my first flight lesson .

 I have to say it was incredible!

I'll be continuing/completing my journey towards getting a pilot's license.


To finish off the weekend, we made the trek out to Yosemite National Park (below right) today

and experienced what I'd consider the most beautiful mountain range in the US

(Sierra Nevada range).

Half Dome and El Capitan were breathtaking and completely visible from the roads


Click link below to see more from Yosemite National Park


Click on the YouTube link below to see Michael

behind the STEERING WHEEL until seconds before takeoff.
Then, he flew for the next almost hour and brought it in for
a landing until they were almost on the runway. Michael is in the

right hand seat in this video, and you can see he is steering

My first flight - YouTube

March 2017

Les - Jan - Heather - Fairbanks, AK Ice Sculpture Show

April 13, 2017
Amy was advanced from Apprentice Dancer to
Professional Dancer


April 16, 2017
Lauren's 30th Birthday



April 26, 2017
Yep, another magpie convention
We just never seem to run out of things to talk about

Been a long time, so lots to catch up on
Donna and Jackie

May - 2017
Michael and Maria (M&M) rescued this precious
"Jack The Beagle"
from the rescue center 


Family and friends having dinner in memory of

We just do not know how we have made it
through the past three years without Ron with us.
There is such a huge void in all of our lives.

Steve, Jim, David, Elise, Paul, Ellen, Jackie, Julia, Lauren and Mina





I gave them these shirts, so hoping they would fit.






Just noticed this one of David & Elise below.  Had to add it, in addition to the one above on the right.

Do these two look as if they just did some dastardly/mischievous deed

  and they, and only they, know about it?  Wicked, wicked. 
Gotta luv it.  Super duper picture.  Hope someone can get them to tell us what caused their electric smiles.

These two were taken from a distance, so I am enlarging them - not playing favorites, honest injun! 



Last - but not least - L-R
Elise (Mother) and Lauren (Daughter) - Julia (Daughter) and Ellen1 (Mother)

June 2, 2017

Bill, Yumi and Amy lost their beloved Lilly - who went to join Angel.
We all know they are all at the Rainbow Bridge, waiting for us.
Such a sweet doggie!



Les was the second announcement

in the Bitburg AFB, Germany newspaper




June 2017

That fast jetting cuz of ours, Donna
and Kim were able to fly from Seattle
to TX to spend two nights with DeAlva.

July 11, 2017
Then, a couple of weeks later,
here Donna shows up in Tampa.
It is always great to meet, have
such a nice three hour lunch
and swap photos and genealogy

July - 2017

Stay tuned
I have an
early start on 2017
From one extreme to the other!!!

These three strings of Christmas trees separate each year

January 10, 2016 - 82nd Birthday
The center  picture - I am holding the orchid Bill & Yumi sent me.
The book I am holding is from Les & Jan to Chuck for his birthday the month before we lost Chuck.
It was Chuck's life story in pictures.  The front cover is of the six of us. 
Chuck did not put that book down.  He went through it over and over. 
I keep it beside me on the sofa and now I go through it over and over.
 What a jewel of a gift that was to Chuck.
Paul, Ellen, Elise, Lauren and several others took me out to dinner. 
Very nice birthday.

02-2016 - Les on the right - Polar Plunge
Per Les, "It's always 32° - any colder and it freezes"

Donna Blunt Vanderweerd/Seattle, WA

DeAlva Blunt Eitelman/Longview, TX
are my cousins on my Granny Blunt's side - my Dad's Mother.

We three had our DNA done.
 Ancestor & history books state we had Indian blood.
DNA tests denied that.
Donna, for many years, has been a flight attendant with Alaska Airlines
Donna & Jack lost their son about two months after we lost Ron.

DeAlva has a son who has been battling Lou Gehrig's Disease for years.
So, we three Blunt Musketeer Cousins have much in common, just no Indian blood.
SHOWN BELOW: - This is my Granny - my dad's mother and my dad.
I see & remember those high cheek bones & dark brown skin
, & everyone in the town of
Vivian, LA said if the doc can't cure you - go see Granny because she
had Indian magical powers and she healed them, mostly babies.
 I interviewed too many of those folks, including my aunt who grew up in the town with Granny. 
This picture of Granny was taken in 1948, six months before she died. 
She was born in 1881, and survived rearing four sons all by herself.

This is my dad, Roy Josey.
He was Granny's fourth son.
Same black hair, black eyes
and dark skin as Granny.

Donna got a non-stop flight to Tampa,

stayed overnight with the crew at their hotel about five miles from me,
I picked her up, we had a three hour lunch, exchanged newly found genealogy, photos, etc, 
caught up with each other, & she flew back to Seattle after lunch. 
Donna has been back two other times
Since we are so into genealogy and we are related,
we sound like a couple of magpies. 
Luv every minute of it

Daniel, Julia, Ellen, Paul

April - 2016 - Lauren's 29th Birthday

May 7, 2016

Yumi - Amy - Bill - Jackie

The theater where their
performances & graduation were held

Stage full of graduating aspiring dancers, actors, directors, producers, screenwriters, etc.
Date on my camera was messed up. Again, I missed having Chuck around.

February - 2017
Jim, thank you so much for framing this so nicely.

Update - April 13, 2017
Amy advanced from
  Apprentice Dancer to  
Professional Dancer
May - 2016
Upon graduation,
Amy accepted a position with
American Contemporary Ballet in
Los Angeles, CA.
AMY HELFRICH, Apprentice Dancer
From Bealeton, VA;
trained at
Manassas Ballet Academy
 and holds a B.F.A. in Dance from
University of North Carolina
School of The Arts

18 years of hard work & dedication by Amy, Bill and Yumi to achieve a dream of a lifetime for all three.

Update -  April 13, 2017
Now, we have to see
 when we can travel 
to California to catch
 one of her performances

Manassas Ballet Academy

April 13, 2017

Our former student, @amyhelfrich is now a full company member at

American Contemporary Ballet in LA!

Here she is in 2012 dancing Paquita, for which she would then win a top 12 award at YAGP.

#manassasballetacademy #balletstudio #yagp#paquita #tutu #sopround #reachforyourdreams

May 7, 2017

Daniel started working for this company while he was still at UF.  He is Vice President of Sales at Cordaroy's Beanbags.  He oversees retail and wholesale strategies and operations. This includes going to furniture markets in Las Vegas and visiting their retail stores throughout the country

Daniel:  I will never forget when I
rang your door bell, you and
Ellen3 came to the door and
screamed "Grammyjaws, you made it;
now, my graduation party is perfect!"
In addition, you said that many were
taking bets that I would be unable to
pull off such a feat as described below.
In fact, I was still full of enough steam to take
you on with a bit of arm wrestling.

Paul and Jackie

Once again, I gave Jim my details
(what I wanted to say about the two graduations on the same day)
He summed it up thusly.  Jim really missed his calling. 
As I told him over and over, "you DO GOT a way with words, Jim".

I forgot to add:
I had to go through the infamous
Atlanta Airport going and coming.
Seven grandchildren with high school
and college = 14 graduations.  All
13 attended so far.  Number 14 and
last one will be Julia in May of 2018.

Look at all of the honor cords

Home of the Gators

Ms. Daisy also attended the graduation party.

Still connected with UF was
Daniel & Ellen3's story
that made headlines on the UF campus
See caption under this picture, then:
Click on the picture for the story.

Manhunt for "Mr. Chili Pepper"
 is successful.  The bandits were caught
and Mr. Chili went back to his lawful owners,
Daniel and Ellen.  Final reward, Mr. Chili
stood out on the 62nd floor balcony during the holidays
all decked out with enough lights that no one could miss it.
Message:  Don't mess with anyone named Helfrich or Toneff.

Click on Daniel's picture below
to see the newspaper article

Look out, Tampa, we heard
the Blunt Magpies are back in town.

June 2016 - Les and Jan on left.
Les was President of the Palmer Rotary Club.
They had the opportunity, along with this
other couple, to make a trip of a lifetime
to South Africa, so they jumped at it.

We could feel the electrical vibes as they
flew over the Gulf of Mexico close to Florida. 

Les and Jan's Mission
To Help Build a Home For a Family in South Africa
Spectacular Photos!!!!
This is the cover of the beautiful hard bound book Les & Jan
gave me of all of those photos!!

Home for a spell in South Africa.


July 2016
Our baby/youngest
granddaughter & grandchild
is all grown up at 20.
She will graduate from USF in 2018.
New teacher on the horizon.

Here is proof that Julia will
be a great teacher!

Can you believe it?
Three times in one year.
We heard they are conspiring
on how to get DeAlva from
TX down to Tampa for a
Since we have a picture of DeAlva,
might we consider putting out a

Picture it: a posse bringing DeAlva on
horseback from TX to FL at the age of almost 88.

August 26, 2016
Look at that red hair, would you.
Six generations of red hair
Came from their
mother Rebeka,
granddad Les,
great grandmother, Jackie,
great great grandmother, Cleo Sims Josey,
great great great grandmother, Zula or Sulie Baker Sims.
No pictures/records before their ggg-grandmother on hair color.

Just picked out a few of Rebeka
with these darlings in 2016

Left - Hadrian and Right - Thaddius

I think that is Hadrian ON the steering wheel
I think that is Thaddius on the dashboard
Now, they are saying:

"We kept Mom smiling all day
We cleaned up the playground
We ran the roads
We picked & shucked corn
Let's go pick up our pay checks, OK?
Hut 2-3-4 - we're keeping in step- yepper."

Bill Kelly
Jan's Dad

October 16, 2016
Jan's Dad

Jan's dad, Bill, and Ellen1's dad,  Frank, were
two of a kind, just really special men. 
They were both fun-loving, quick witted, charming and,
in general, just so nice to have in the room. 
They brought a special aura to any gathering.
Bill and Madeline were the greatest of hosts
each time we went to Alaska. 
Our hearts go out to Madeline, Jan and the entire family
on such a great loss. 
 Both men left such a huge void in so many lives. 

October 19, 2016

Too cloudy here in Tampa.
But, Les & Jan  saw it in AK.
They bought a new super duper camera for
their 2016 trip to Africa & here is a perfect
example of what  a great camera it is.

SUPERMOON- a term used to describe a full moon at its perigee,

or closest point to earth during the lunar orbit will be the
biggest and brightest Supermoon  to rise in almost 69 years
(the last time was 1948).

In fact, the full moon won't come this close to Earth again until November 25, 2034


Even better than NASA's shots in 2006 

Thanksgiving - 2016
Daniel and Ellen3

Introduction of Ellen3
Ellen & Daniel met while attending UF together.
After graduation from UF, Ellen  applied at four
Physician Assistant Schools.

She was offered the first two, but she really
wanted her Alma Mater that she had just graduated from -
University of Florida.

She got  an offer from UF just before Christmas -
beginning in the 2017 summer semester.

Meanwhile, she has been working
for a doctor and shadowing a few surgeons

Ellen and Daniel both graduated from UF.

December 16 - 2016
 Lauren and Mina
At Kristina & Adam's Wedding

Mina and Lauren's babies
Rescue Babies - The Best

Big Sister/Morgan - Little Sister/Savannah

12 - 17-2016 - One of the many times we have visited Chuck's grave.
As we were walking away, I turned to blow a kiss to Chuck.
New headstones had been put up in front of his row.
These two headstones were in front of Chuck!!!!!! 
Ron  (left and Paul next to Ron) and Chuck one row back to the right - with the wreath.
I wanted to share this angle with you all.  It is such a serene location.
The one above was taken on December 17.  So many of us had cameras, we had dozens of angles.
Jim took the one below and did his usual wizardry showing it much more clearly.

Extraordinary artwork by Jim Rabun 
The Editor-In-Chief for the
Helfrich Newsletter

Click on the picture below for Chuck's life story.

  I  ordered two wreaths the first of December
(one for Chuck & one for another veteran)
We went to the cemetery the week before Christmas - took pictures of the wreath.

Then, yesterday (January 1, 2017) I received this e-mail above and the two pictures below. 
I simply could not stop crying. it touched me so deeply.

How apropos with Chuck having served as a Cubmaster and Scoutmaster for so many years,
and all of  our four sons being in cub and boy scouts, it was so poignant. 

 I thought regular volunteers and military did this, but the scouts did this one.
I hope some of you might check out the site where you can order them.

A wreath on every veteran's grave - what a great picture that would make.


So few people know about this special program.
f you pay for two wreaths ($15.00 each) you get a third one free.

Thank you, James, (below) the young scout who placed the wreath on the headstone from us to 
Retired US Air Force M/Sgt. Charles E. Helfrich

2016 - Les and Jan - Regular appearance
at their company's Christmas Party

2016 CHRISTMAS 2016
David and Jackie

 Lauren - Mina - Morgan - Savannah

Elise - Michael - Lauren - Boomer - Bella

12-2016 - Mina, Lauren, Elise & Michael

2016 - Christmas Day
The Helfrich Family is growing
Well, each Christmas we have Grammy Games.
This year, it was a snowman and snowballs to throw into his hat - Reward: $1 per dunkin.

The second game was tossing inflated rings  onto the deer antler horns that David is wearing.
Ellen#3 won the most money, but it was quickly determined that we have
no/nada/zero = absolutely NO basketball players in this motley crew.
So, next Christmas the price MAY be significantly increased for each successful throw
$5.00 or $10.00 each?  Or do you all want to go back to the cash counting banks?

Here's General Grammyjaws telling them that ladies WILL go first.
As always, there is at least one renegade in the bunch.
Daniel is hiding out with the ladies, as he is the eternal eager beaver, especially with money at stake.
He got back with the guys before the game.  You can see he did his tosses after Ellen3 won.
Daniel is in the green shirt and Ellen3 is in the black & white striped top, so watch.

Ellen3 sitting on the right saying to Daniel:
"No way are you going to beat me, Bucko.  I'm so far ahead - you can't even see me!"
Yep, she beat the whole cotton pickin bunch
Daniel, you picked out a winner in Ellen3.

Daniel - Ellen - All is well

We always put the kids in the hallway.
Tried the closet, not large enough.
We grownups are to the right
in the dining room.  It was a houseful.

Ellen1's sister, Cathy & Paul Harris/Jackie, Paul, Maria & Michael - Maria & Michael - At Elise's home

It's always good to have Bill, Yumi and Amy
down for Christmas.  We just miss
Les, Jan, the girls and guys though.

Happy 57th birthday, Paul

Paul and Ellen's
25th Wedding Anniversary


Poor Les & Jan -
After the Africa trip, they had no
vacation time to come to FL.

Instead, they spent all of
Christmas Eve & most of
Christmas day in the ER in the Tundras of Alaska.
Les had to have gall bladder surgery.

Here in Tampa, we had just finished Christmas dinner. 
Paul & Ellen put on quite a feast, as they always do - for about 25 people.
Bill was being a gracious guest & helping with the dishes; 
tried to get his ham hock of a hand down into a wine goblet, broke it,
 and the bleeding would not stop between his two middle fingers.
He & Yumi had to spend the rest of Christmas night in the ER also.
Five stitches, and they had to drive back to VA the next day.

The picture below pretty much says it all for
Bill and Les for
how the holidays ended for them.



January 10, 2015 - Jackie's 81st Birthday

02-15 Les's Annual Polar Plunge

What a beautiful wedding!!!!
Such a great time had by all!!!!
Jesse and Heather's Wedding in Las Vegas

Rebeka and Heather

Kelly Family - Four Generations
Rebeka - Jan - Bill - Madeline -Thaddius - Hadrian

Helfrich Family - Four Generations
Les - Chuck - Rebeka - Jackie - Thaddius - Hadrian

Jesse was added into the Helfrich Family Group
(Jesse far left on back row)

Are his lips asking "am I in trouble?"

After losing Ron in 2014, 2015 came out punching us hard too.
On Chuck's birthday, June 25, 2015, Ellen's mother, Anne, passed away suddenly.
Anne was born in Ireland and settled in
New York, where she met and married Frank.
She was a telephone operator in New York when I was a telephone operator in Louisiana in the 50's.
I  thought she had such an elegant presence about herself. Anne was in a special class by herself.
There are many adjectives I could use to describe Anne,
but simply put, she was the epitome of elegance and grace.
The "Grace Kelly" of our extended family if you will,
Anne truly was an Uptown New York Lady, in every sense of the word.
Jim helped me with this too.  I definitely wanted her to be epitomized as an Uptown NY Lady.

July 13, 2015, just before I went to see Chuck, I had the Bichon Frise Rescue send

a courier to pick up Jazzy, as I was gone so much to the hospital and then hospice.  She was
pining away for her daddy.  Crying, I told her that I hoped I did not lose her daddy on the same day.
I cried the entire 20 miles to hospice, only to lose Chuck six hours after losing Jazzy.
Thank you, Marilyn, for taking such good care of
Jazzy until she passed away six months later in February 2016.

After losing Anne in June and Chuck in July, on August 31, we lost Frank, Ellen1's dad,
Anne and Frank were almost like a brother and sister to me.  I liked them so much.

Frank was the life of any party or gathering.   He was a retired New York fireman.
I loved to get him to tell the story about the fire where he saved his brother's life (Tommy)
 who was also a firefighter.  I thought it was so special.
And, you could not find a better story teller than Frank with his expressions, animations, hand gestures, etc.
I could listen to that particular story over and over.
We were put through the wringer for a time there, losing  Anne, Chuck, Frank & Jazzy all in three months
all on the heels of losing Ron just a year before. 
Here are a few pictures of Jazzy, Anne & Frank.  Chuck's pictures are below.

Frank & Anne King
(Ellen1's parents - Abt. 2013)
I have always loved this picture

Anne Kinny King & Frank King with their four grandchildren
Chris & Ellen2 (Paul & Cathy King Harris' children)
Julia & Daniel (Paul & Ellen King Helfrich's children)


June 28, 2015
Introducing Maria  Dahlstrom 
Michael & Maria at a family
member's wedding in Tampa, FL
Michael & Maria both graduated from FSU

They both live & work in New York.

June 2015- Jan - Rebeka - Les
Hadrian - Thaddius
Anchorage, Alaska airport
coming to Tampa, FL
It was so special for them to bring the boys
all that way from Alaska and Oregon
to see their Great-Grand Papa Chuck,
before we lost him the next month.

06-23-2015 - Great-Grand Papa Chuck
Grammyjaws with Hadrian
Mom/Rebeka with Thaddius
Two pictures below:
Left is Hadrian
Right is Thaddius

Have a satchel full of smiles to pass out - will travel

Again, how special was that for all of them to fly from Alaska and Oregon,
just so the babies could see their Great-Grand Papa Chuck and vice versa.
I am sure these pictures will mean a lot to them when they are older.
Thank you, Les, Jan & Rebeka, Hadrian & Thaddius
But, we knew you all came to put a smile on Papa Chuck's face.
You ALL did just that!

This shows what a
daddy's girl Jazzy was

June 25, 2015 - Chuck's 83rd birthday
We lost him on July 13, 2015


The top middle picture is Jazzy on the day we brought her home in 2013.
She is doing her infamous Bichon wave, standing on her hind feet and waving-begging for a snack. 
She had been a breeding dog, apparently, and when she had served her purpose, she must have been put out on
the streets.  In addition to being homeless, Jazzy was blind and had been for years.

She was pitiful.  They called the Bichon Rescue here in Florida and three women drove to
Carolina to get her.  Brought her home, called us (since we had lost our Wobbles who had come
from them ten years before).  They had fund raising campaigns and we contributed,
Jazzy got her eye surgery and could see the world again.  We wee told to come take her home with us.

We cried when we went to get her - sight unseen.
She was the joy of our lives for almost three years until her daddy got so sick.
 She was strictly a daddy's girl. 

She was so precious. 
How I miss her.

July 13, 2015 - My Special Tribute to Schatzie/Chuck/Honey/Dad/Papa Chuck/Great-Grand Papa Chuck
Chuck's mother always called him Schatzie.  Don't think many of you knew about that.
It means "sweetheart" in German.  And, they had a German Shepherd Dog when
they were stationed in Germany immediately after WWII,  that they named Schatzie.

Chuck was a military man inside and out.  Here is a link to one of his favorite periods in the Air Force. 
He was NCOIC of the Drill Precision Team.
 Performing all across Germany when we were stationed there in the 50's.
Click on picture below to see six other photos of the
 Precision Drill Performance.

 Chuck loved his work for 20 years in the Air Force
 as an Air Policeman, both out in the field and  on up into administration. 
He moved up through the ranks quickly. 
He truly loved his job in the Philippines being in charge of the Town Patrol, equivalent to a Chief of Police.
 I can honestly say that everyone had the utmost respect for him. 

He reached the pinnacle of his military career
 when his former boss in the Philippines (Colonel Shannon) called him and said
"Helfrich, pack up your family - I have the orders cut for you.
 I need a good Statistical Analyst here at
Hickam Air Force Base Headquarters PACAF in Honolulu, Hawaii."

 (I think that stood for Pacific Air Command/Air Force).
Chuck worked in the Headquarters building that you have seen in many WWIl movies and
the bullets are still all over the walls dug in so prominently where the
planes shot at the building on Pearl Harbor Day.  This is the way I remember it.

We were fortunate to have lived the lives we led, traveled as much as we did, to have
 four sons and ensuing families, live into our eighties, attend each and every grandchild's birth,
both of their graduations from high school and college, weddings, etc., 
and we were married for two months short of 63 years.

Chuck's life story is on the helfrichjosey.com web site,
as well as listed above, so I will leave that tid bit with you.

I just wanted to put a few pictures here for everyone to see. 
Chuck was so loved and is so missed by so many.

Chuck had a full military honors service.
The link to it is below - just click on this picture
of Chuck in his uniform.
The first several minutes are the
Singing A. F. Sergeants (Prelude)
Feel free ro fast forward if you prefer.
The full military honors  ceremony is
 at the end at Bushnell National Cemetery.
Chuck's obituary is at this link,to read, just pause it.

L - R - Bill, Michael, Paul, Les, David

This is REALLY one of my favorites

Daniel-August 2015
Now 21 years old

August 2015 - Thaddius-Les-Hadrian
I can finally tell them apart

10-20-2015 - Hadrian and Thaddius

11-2015 - Jackie & Paul - Bushnell National Cemetery



January 10, 2014 - Jackie's 80th Birthday

May 6, 2014 was the saddest day
in all of our lives.  We lost Ron.
He fought so many battles with so
many issues, kidney, cancer, heart, etc. 
Paul gave us another almost
ten years to be graced with Ron,
by donating a second kidney to Ron.
As Drew Silverman
(TGH Pharmacist & also a two time kidney transplant patient)
said at the Celebration of Ron's Life, the irony
of it is that Ron put his heart and soul
into everything he ever did.  He opened his
heart to everyone and his heart is what
finally gave out.  The chapel was full,
they had to open up two more rooms
and there was still only standing room.
I am repeating what the doctors said:
"I have never seen anyone go through
all that you have been through and
have such a miraculous recovery
each and every time, and still keep
the outstanding attitude that you have."
He truly took a big chunk of all of our
hearts when his heart stopped beating
and he left us.

Click on Ron's picture above
for his Celebration of Life Service
All of our families can never thank Paul and his family enough for the
extra two months short of ten years of life that they gave Ron and his family
with Paul donating a kidney to Ron. 
We celebrated that treasured gift each year.

Ron in ICU & Paul
This was the first day after surgery & their first visit

August 4, 2004

We had a cake each year to celebrate for nine years and 10 months.
With a candle on the cake to designate the year celebrated.

Ron's first pair of shoes

Ron's Memorial Bench Picture below.
I always felt Jim looked at Ron as a brother -
His words prove I was right.

These pictures below will forever be indelibly emblazoned in our memories.
1993 - Michael ad Ron

1993 - Lauren driving Michael to Tiger Direct
Michael is already determined to make his
Dad's dream an actual reality about him going to Google.

1990 -  Lauren and Ron

1990 - Lauren and Ron

May  31, 2014


2014 - June and July -

David and I had booked this train trip a year earlier and it was non-refundable. 

So, even though I did not feel like going so soon after losing Ron, we went.

David flew from Washington DC and I from Tampa, FL and we met in AZ.
Took a train from there to the west coast and all the way north from there.

Some varmints on horseback chased down our train.

 They boarded and pulled off a train robbery.

David had no money, so I gave him a dollar so they would not shoot him. 

Poor choice on my part.  David, you still owe me that dollar.

The sheriff told David he was lucky they were going to let him live,
 because they had already heard about him.
Probably from a "wanted dead or alive" poster.
After they made their getaway, some sweet little strolling
Native Americans came through the train cars serenading us.

They were so talented.  I told them they should go try out in Hollywood.

David, FYI, this deputy below is the one who said
he had already heard about you.   He was one
tough looking hombre.  Think I would be
looking over my shoulder, if I were you.

Then, to the Grand Canyon

Then, up the entire west coast (just beautiful) and visited with
Rebeka and Kevin in Oregon - Rebeka was four months pregnant with the twins..
They took us to their beautiful rose gardens - really enjoyed walking
around and seeing so many different varieties of flowers.
Later that day, we met up with Kevin's parents, Tom and Carol for dinner.

Then, stopped in Seattle, WA to do some gawking, enjoyed

music and entertainment on the sidewalks and the Seattle Space Needle.

Then, flew to Anchorage to visit with Les and Jan.

Oh, in Alaska, Les put us up in a B&B,
an old converted hangar, with one half of it occupied with a plane that the
pilot was building from scratch. The B&B was right on the edge of the runway. 

 Here's the plane with the pilot who was building it from scratch. 
We could step out of the living room right into the work area.
Don't forget, the B&B was beside the runway for the area. 
Planes are like cars in Alaska, almost everybody has one.

Les and Jan met us at the airport - Hatcher's Pass

Mount Alyeska
Overlooking seven glaciers - took the ski lift to the top.
Breathtaking does not even begin to describe it. 
It allows one to see seven glaciers.

Here is one of the seven glaciers below - Turnagain Arm.

Wild Sea Life and Glacier cruise 

 Did the plane trip up to and around Mt. McKinley/Mt. Denali and landed on the Ruth Glacier. 

 Pilot said it was the
most beautiful day he had ever seen up there.  I was in the co-pilot seat and asked
David if he could hand me his good camera, and I took these next three pictures
in sequence as it looked as though we were going straight into Mt. McKinley, before he banked
to take us down to land on Ruth Glacier, 7,000 above sea level, I think he said.  You can see by
pictures two and three, I took the pictures right through the propellers.

It truly took our breath away.


Took another train, the Alaskan RR,  up to Fairbanks to see Heather and Jesse.

Beautiful scenery from the train
It was good of Heather and Jesse to drive that distance
to see us.  We really did enjoy the
infamous Alaskan Cabin Dinner and Show.

David, why don't you call that deputy and
see if you can swap those yellow shoes
for my dollar back.  Probably
the only way I will ever get my buck back.

Not sure what day we went to the infamous
A restaurant in Anchorage that we never miss. 
Supposedly, back in the day, it was a house of ill repute upstairs.
Alaska has always been a state (really a country) that is full of surprises.

 Flew back to Seattle, took another choo-choo ride up into Canada,
across that beautiful piece of property that they just dropped the
 Canadian Rockies into.  I think it took almost three days to get across Canada
We had just traipsed through some of the most awe inspiring sights for about ten days.  .
Arizona across and up the entire USA western coast, through Alaska, across Canada to NY.
Here is just one sample of the beauty of Canada.

Supposed to go on down to Washington DC to see Bill and Yumi, but I  hit NY

hacking my lungs up.  I  could not continue on to DC.

To end the magnificent trip, when we got to NY,
they had messed up our hotel reservations, so we got the

super duper Executive Suite that normally costs $3,000 per night.
I was too sick to enjoy it.

David was like a kid in a candy shop, and even though it
was well past midnight, he was calling everyone he knew,
in the USA and around the world, to tell them about it.
We said our goodbyes the next morning, in the hotel lobby.

I survived the flight from NY to Tampa, got in my car and drove to the ER. 

I had fallen on the concrete floor in the B&B in AK and
had about a 12 inch black and blue bruise on my right hip.
It served me right, because David had just said, "Aunt Jackie, you might be 80 years old,
but it is after midnight and I can't keep up with you, so I am going to bed." 
I was so full of myself hearing that I had worn the guy out who is in his 40's
that I was dancing a jig with such delight, and Karma smacked me with a lightning bolt.

Side note:  When I fell, I could not get up, and was moaning softly so as to not
awaken David in the next room.  But, he heard me moaning as I was trying to pull myself
across the floor to pull myself up on a chair arm.  He yelled "are you OK, Aunt Jackie?"
I said: "I have fallen and can't get up."  He jumped to the ladder at the top of the bunk bed
and as he got almost to the bottom, he fell too. but did not hurt himself.  Funny, funny.

The 500 pound door on the Canadian train flew out of
my hand when I opened it (we hit something on the track just as I opened the door)

the door came back and pounded me in the eye.  So, I looked like half of a raccoon. 

Little kids in the ER asked "lady, what happened to you." 

Well, I was as white as a sheet,
coughing so badly I could not talk nor answer questions, could not sit up straight,
my hair was standing straight up, as I did not have the strength to comb it,
looking like that half of a raccoon, they had a legitimate question.  I almost asked
them if they wanted to see a REAAAALY bad looking bruise on my hip.

The doc in the ER wanted to admit me to the hospital -
he felt sure I had pneumonia or at least on the verge of it - record said "life threatening."
"No Way" - my usual response.  I paid dearly for it, as I was flat on my back
for almost two months with a fever and delirious.  Then, had to
deal with David calling me and telling me that whatever the hell I had, I gave it to him. 
Boo Hoo.  Poor baby he thought he was dying too. 
Some mighty ugly germs somewhere on that Canadian train. 

We settled for a cupcake for our 62nd
anniversary a few months later
Chuck and I were still working on
slow motion for so long after losing Ron

11-2014 - Les & Jan had met
Sarah Palin three times.  This
was a wedding they were attending.
Les told Sarah that his mother
would get such a kick out of talking
with me, if she would.  She was only
too happy to oblige. Someone took a
picture of her talking with me and then
with Chuck.  When Les called and said
"Mom, I have someone here who wants to say hello
to you."  Not knowing who was on the other end,
the minute I heard her ask, "Jackie, when are you
coming back up here to Alaska?", I screamed and said:
"Is this Sarah Palin?"  She asked how I picked up on it
so quickly.  One of the highlights of my life.  Chuck was.
tickled pink to talk with her too.

Designed by Jim Rabun




AITP (Association of Information Technology Professionals).

Michael on the left - he was Vice President of the committee

They did classes for IT topics at schools around FL,
 and had IT professionals come in to speak

Mike at front gate of Florida State University

Home of the Seminoles

December 12, 2014 - Graduation Night

These two guys  (shown below) get top billing for this graduation.
Over professors and other family members.
LES - December 2014, Les & Jan had just flown to Oregon for
 the birth of their first grandchildren - twin boys.
AS SOON AS THEY WERE BORN,  Les got on an airplane
headed to Michael's graduation.  Hell nor high water
would keep him away.  He was very appreciative of
Ron and Michael coming to Rebeka and Heather's
high school and college graduations in Alaska, and he certainly
wanted to attend Michael's graduation.

PAUL - There are not enough words to explain why
Paul needs to be at the top with Les alone.
Paul - whether he wants it or not is (as he should be) held in
such high esteem for what he did by donating a kidney
to Ron to give Michael, his family and all the rest
of us almost ten additional years.  There is no
greater gift that another human being can give.

In addition to Paul donating a kidney, there was even more
that was involved.  Ron was truly on death's doorstep, and
quoting his doctor, "we are losing Ron."  He met with the board
and they decided to try a new clinical study called "plasmapheresis."
Ron and Paul were only the eighth one to have this done in Florida.
Ron had so many antigens in his body from the first kidney transplant,
it was impossible to get him a second kidney.  With this new process,
they would take Ron's blood and cleanse it much like dialysis, AFTER
the transplant, to rid the body of those antigens. 

So, in actuality,
Ron and Paul were pioneers in this arena. 

 If you go research it, you will
see that they are now looking at using that process in many other diseases, multiple
myeloma, seizures and many others.  It is very expensive.

So, Paul gave a kidney knowing an experimental phase would follow.
Ron and Paul were, in every sense of the word, actual true PIONEERS.   


That should count for a lifetime of nothing but
 and love from each and every family member

for the rest of their lives, come hell or high water.

1.  Paul - Michael - Ellen

2.  Les - Michael
3.  Mina - Lauren - Elise - Michael - Maria
4.  Michael & Maria
5.  Elise's mother - Suzanne and Forrest
6.  Chuck and Jackie
7.  Elise's dad - Gene Buechel and Judi  McNeil

Professor Ebe
What a profound, genuine, &
kind-hearted human being
Professor Ebe is!!
He and some of his other IT
students drove all the way from FSU to
Tampa for Ron's Celebration of Life Service,
.  Then, he took Michael under his wing and
to a certain degree, we felt he was
trying to fill some of the void that
Michael was dealing with in losing
his dad.  It is so special to have someone
in your life like Professor Ebe.
Thank you from all of the Helfrichs!

Immediately upon graduation, Michael was weighing several
offers from many companies in the IT field. He decided on General Motors.
Shortly after Michael had received the General Motors offer, he had a recruiter from Google reach out to him on LinkedIn. Shortly after the first set of interviews, he found himself interviewing in person at the Mountain View HQ and then shortly after, receiving a job offer. When Michael was around 13 years old, Ron told Michael he could see him working at Google when he finished school.

Needless to say, Michael accepted the job offer with Google in NYC as a Corporate Operations Engineer.
Michael has always loved NY, soooo
that is where he has been since he graduated. Huge success story after all that the family has been through.
Maria took these two pictures when Michael got the "thumbs up call from Google," Jim created the banner.

Michael's new place of employment

2014 - Les and Jan withSarah Palin (3rd time)

Sara Palin AGAIN (three times)
02-2013 - Les's Annual Polar Plunge

2013 Involved two trips of great significance:

July 14, 2013, Bill celebrated his 60th birthday, and we all flew
up/over/down to help him celebrate. 

Great time had by all.

Heather's pre-graduation party the eve of her graduation,
with families who flew in from every direction in the USA!
From as far away as Florida and New York.
In looking at all of these pictures, Ron and Michael were at all graduations, too.
See him between Jan and me?

May 12, 2013, Heather received her

Bachelor's Degree (Social Work) from
University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK!!!

Notice the screen has a special
message for Heather.

See the blue and yellow balloons overhead in the nets?
One of the neatest things they have in Alaska for graduations is confetti or balloons. 
Such a great touch!
At Rebeka's graduation from UAA, they had canon shootings off confetti all around the room.

They took us to the Ice Hotel in Fairbanks - What an experience.  Everything is ice -
 ice seats at the ice bar, ice glasses for drinks, ice chairs, ice beds, etc.
Heather, I put this in here for you to have a picture of you with
both sets of your grandparents, in case you did not have one.

Heather's graduation reception

May 2013 - Ron

July 14, 2013
He does not want anyone to know it was the 60th.

The family gave Bill a canvas print of our family from 2012 at
Rebeka and Kevin's wedding in Alaska.

Found this little gem from 1957
Bill holding Les and Bill's expression screams:

"Mom, please tell me where you bought this thing;
and I will take him back and get you a full refund."

Les & Jan made arrangements with their
AK senator for a tour of the capitol and a group photo.
Thank you, Les & Jan.  The senator was most gracious

Paul, Daniel, Les, Michael, Bill,
Senator Mark Begich (D-AK)
Jackie, Ellen, Chuck, Ron, Jan, Elise, Yumi, Julia

July 14, 2013
L-R Last picture taken of the six of us
Paul, Bill, Ron, David, Michael, Daniel, Les
Jackie and Chuck in front

Sarah Palin - Les - Jan
This was the first time Les & Jan met Sarah Palin.
They were eating - Sarah & Todd walked by.
Les & Jan said "hi" & Sarah stopped to tal
with them, then the picture was taken.

10-2013 - Julia

Chuck and Jackie - 61st Anniversary

Ellen, Daniel, Frank, Anne, Julia, Paul

Daniel and Michael with their two granddads
Chuck on the left and Frank on the right

12-2013 - David Helfrich - St. Mary's Episcopal Church
visiting  the resting place of his dad
Herman Larry "Sonny" Helfrich
and his grandparents
Herman Andrew Helfrich and Mary Elizabeth McCoy Helfrich

2013 - Christmas
David was supposed to be our Surprise Santa,
but even with a mask everyone guessed it was David, even with him not being allowed to talk.

The last three rows above are the last pictures taken of Ron.

2013 - Ron bought this for himself, wrapped & put it under the family tree. 
Paul passed out the gifts. 

Ron opened it and said "oh, Paul, look what Mom gave me"
Paul was stuttering for  several minutes, something about:
"Well, I did not get anything like that from Mom, I guess I really am adopted,
as Ron is falling out of his chair, having fits of hysterical laughter..

Ron's last Christmas

12-26-1992 - Bill & Yumi's Wedding
This was always one of my top favorite pictures of
the four guys - all looking like top movie stars

2013 - Paul - Ellen - Daisy - Daniel - Julia

This was Jazzy's last Christmas

Not sure of this date, but it is a
great picture of Les and Jan.
Thank you so much for the new computer.

Click on "Gift" for
Christmases Past

Christmas Letters - 1952 To 2012