Floral 23

Helen K Bennett

August 10, 1928 ~ July 27, 2022 (age 93)

Obituary

Fun-loving, quick witted, big-hearted Helen Bennett entered heaven July 27, 2022, to dance on the stars (or tabletops if you really knew her). 

Helen (Komick) Bennett 93, passed away peacefully in her sleep in Indianapolis, Indiana where she had lived the past six years near her family. She was born August 10, 1928 in South Bend, IN to Russian immigrant parents and was the third eldest of four daughters of Harry and Dorothy Komick. She is preceded in death by George A. Bennett, her husband of 42 years whom her parents encouraged her to marry at the age of 19 after she fell in love with “the bluest eyes she had ever seen.” She was also preceded in death by sisters Mary Thomas, Ann Geiger and Augie O’Herren.

Helen and her husband made their life in South Bend, IN where they sprinkled fun and joy throughout the community – their motto was “let the good times roll.” The Bennetts were known for their amazing parties, generosity, loving nature and avid love of The University of Notre Dame. They were Godparents to 31 children, allowing them to spread their spirit and love to the younger generation solidifying their place as the world’s coolest aunt and uncle. George preceded Helen in death in 1989 leaving her a widow at the age of 61. His death perpetuated a fiercely independent woman determined to live in her own place until her passing. 

Helen dedicated her life helping others but was especially fond of children. She lovingly touched the lives of elementary children in the South Bend school system for 21 years, including 17 years at Kennedy Elementary as a teacher’s aide. Upon her retirement, Helen volunteered at Catholic Charities, the Notre Dame bookstore and The College Football Hall of Fame. Every weekend she got the crowd fired up and regularly hugged/kissed unexpecting new alums and college football fans (some famous – looking at you Matthew McConaughey) with her enthusiasm.  Like the Notre Dame Golden Dome, Helen had a golden heart devoting her Sundays serving food at the South Bend Center for the Homeless. Her daily goal in life was to make people smile – this gave her a happy heart. Helen could make anyone smile with her compliments. She was that person.

Helen was a member of St. Bavo’s Catholic Church, Mishawaka High School Alumni Association and the Community Resource Center. She graduated from Mishawaka High School in 1947 and later attended Indiana University at South Bend and Kay Maklor School of Modeling where she learned to throw her shoulders back, wear her hats high and her heels even higher. She passed those lessons down to her nieces and grand-nieces however, no one could wear a hat or a leather skirt like Aunt Helen.

Helen is survived by her nephews George (Robin) Geiger of Indianapolis, IN, Greg (Cami) O’Herren of Indianapolis, IN, and Bernie (Jennifer) Thomas of Flower Mound, TX and nieces, Kathleen O’Herren-Huston (Chris Huston) of Chicago, IL and Christine (Sean) Ryan of Fishers IN. Helen had six great-nephews and five great-nieces who had the joy of having their Aunt Helen love them fiercely. She is also survived by the Hahn family of Mishawaka who loved her deeply.

Helen loved her family dearly and was so grateful, she always said “thank you for loving me the way you do.” She had the pleasure of having Angie Berndt (her childhood next door neighbor) as her lifelong friend. She was additionally grateful to the Van Ooteghen family for always being there for her, and especially her Godson Dick, for including her into his life. Finally, she wanted to acknowledge Helen Grace Stoddard, her Mishawaka High School English teacher, who gave her the love of reading poetry and encouraged her with consistent admiration.

Helen did not want to inconvenience friends by having a wake and a funeral. She often complained “tongue in cheek” her family would not listen to her. Her family did actually listen to her all the time, but not this time. She deserves a grand sendoff.

Her family will be hosting two Celebration of Life gatherings; Indianapolis: Wednesday, August 10, 3:30-6:30pm. Celebration of Life prayer at 5:15pm. Westminster Village, Door 4 – 11050 Presbyterian Drive, Indianapolis.
South Bend: Sunday, August 14, 11:30 to 1:30pm. Tippecanoe Place, 620 W. Washington St, South Bend, IN 46601.

Helen penned this several years ago in anticipation of her passing: “Farewell my beloved family, keep well and safe. Hugs to my fun pals and sincere friends. Until then…remember me! See you!” -Helen Bennett

Donations are welcome to continue her dedication to Center for the Homeless in South Bend https://www.cfh.net and St. Bavo’s Catholic Church in Mishawaka https://www.stbavochurch.com/

Private interment will be at St. Joseph Valley Memorial Park. Hahn Funeral Homes https://www.hahnfuneralhomes.com is where the coolest people like Helen hold their funerals and will be handling arrangements.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Helen K Bennett, please visit our floral store.

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