Funeral Services: Will be held on Friday, March 25, 2016, at 10:30 a.m. at the First Baptist Church in Cumberland with burial in the Massena Center Cemetery, north of Massena. Pastor Mike Martin will officiate the service.
Open Visitation: Will be held on Thursday, March 24th, from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Steen Funeral Home in Massena.
Memorials: Memorials may be made to the Helen Bower memorial fund to be established by the family at a later date.
Helen Mildred Bower was born on September 27, 1918, to Hervey Clayton and Anna Elizabeth (Birney) Finney in Washington, Iowa. She passed away on Monday, March 21, 2016, at the Caring Acres Nursing and Rehab Center in Anita, Iowa, at the age of 97.
Helen spent her elementary years at Ainsworth Consolidated School and then high school years in Washington, Iowa. For 2 years she attended Washington Junior College and then transferred to Iowa State College in Ames and graduated with a BS in Home Economics in August of 1940. She started her teaching career in Liscomb, Iowa, for 1 year. She became the Home Demonstration Agent in Cass and Adair Counties working with girls in 4-H Clubs and Womens Activities for 2 years. She was a sponsor for Lincoln Linkettes. For 6 months she was director of girls activities at the YMCA in Chicago.
She fell in love with Collins Bower and they were married on March 21, 1945 in the United Presbyterian Church in Washington, Iowa. To this union three children were born: David, Elaine and Kenneth. They moved to the family farm where she lived the rest of her life. Helen and Collins sponsored a Latvian family in 1950 and kept them for a year and are still friends today.
During these years she judged 4-H girls exhibits in all SW Iowa County Fairs. She taught 2 years of school in Cumberland-Massena and 6 years at Bridgewater-Fontanelle. Helen was a Farm Bureau District 9 Womens Chairman for 8 years. She became Merit Mother for Iowa Mothers Association and has been a member the rest of her life. Her other activities have been 1600 hours of volunteer work for the Cass County Memorial Hospital Auxiliary making crocheted baby caps, volunteer services and working in coffee shop. She was a member of Friends of the Library, Neighborhood Sunshine Club and Farm Bureau. Helen enjoyed reading, making quilts for each grandchild, crocheting afghans and plastic canvas gifts. She sent birthday cards to Shepherds Home and wrote letters and cards to everyone until she died.
She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Collins; daughter, Elaine; grandson, Daniel; great grandson, Jacob Daniel and sister, Mabel.
She is survived by her two sons, David Bower and wife Shirlee of Massena and Kenneth Bower and wife Judy of Laredo, Missouri; grandchildren, Beth Spieker (David), Barry Bower (Bobbi), Abigail Bower (surviving wife of Daniel), Philip Bower (Amanda), Mike Bower (Stephanie), Kyle Bower and Kayla Jackson (adopted); 18 great grandchildren; sister-in-law, Mildred Bower; cousins, nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.