Memorial services for Helen Elaine Heath, 86, formerly of Salina, KS, will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, October 11, 2013 at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence, KS. She passed away in Lawrence on Wednesday, October 9, 2013. Inurnment will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery.
Helen was born October 2, 1927 in Salina, the daughter of Earl and Florence Heath. She was a 1945 graduate and valedictorian of Salina High School, and earned a degree in bacteriology from the University of Kansas in 1949. While at KU, she was a member of the Chi Omega Sorority, active in student body government, and worked on the Jayhawker Yearbook. She was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa Society her senior year. Helen was a Lifetime Member of the KU Alumni Association and was actively involved in the Chi Omega Foundation; Co-Editor of the “Chi-Omega Alumni Newsletter”; and President of the Kansas City Area Chi Omega Alumni Association.
Her dedicated work in hematology for 35 years at the University of Kansas Medical Center (1949-1984) included teaching at the KU Medical School as an assistant professor from 1978-84 and selecting and mentoring students in the Medical Technology program for many years. Following her retirement, Helen returned to Salina, where she was active in the community, serving as President of the Friends of the Public Library and volunteering at the Salina Art Center and Salina Community Theatre. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church. In 2012 she moved to Lawrence to be closer to family.
Helen loved being with family and her many friends, traveling, attending cultural events, reading, working crossword puzzles, and playing bridge. She will be remembered for the gracious way in which she lived her life and how much she loved and appreciated family. She will be dearly missed by her family and friends.
Helen is survived by two brothers and sisters-in law of Lawrence, KS: Alan and Marilyn Heath and Don and Mary Jo Heath; three nephews and their families: Tom and wife Pamela Heath and their children Josh, Chris and wife Ellie and their child, Reagan; Gary and wife Debbie Heath and Cara; Kevin and wife Meagan Heath and their children Alexandra and Owen; niece, Elizabeth Ann Heath; and grand niece Kelly Griffin Westin and husband Andrew of Oakdale, MN. She was preceded in death by her parents and nephew David Walter Heath.
The family extends its sincere appreciation to the staff of the Neuvant House and Pioneer Ridge of Lawrence and to the associates of Southern Care Hospice for their kind, loving care of Helen. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to the Chi Omega Sorority Lambda Owl Foundation, 4000 W. 6th St., Suite B-103, Lawrence, KS 66049 or to the Salina Community Theatre, 303 E. Iron Ave., Salina, KS 67401.