Helen M. Petersen, 98, of Elk Horn, Iowa, passed away Wednesday, November 4, 2020, at Salem Lutheran Home in Elk Horn.
Helen Marie was born June 22, 1922, in Elk Horn, Iowa, to Hans and Freda (Larsen) Petersen. She graduated from high school and went to nurses training in Marshalltown with her sister Alice. She continued to work there for two and half years when she moved back to Elk Horn.
As youths, still in school, a boy used to steal Helen’s sled at the top of a hill and coast to the bottom, leaving Helen to walk down the hill sledless. The boy’s name was Glen Petersen and years later in 1946 Helen married him. She said, “I got even with him though – I married him!”
Helen and Glen had one daughter, Debbie. Helen didn’t work as a nurse too much when Debbie was small, but she eventually went to work at the Salem Nursing Home, where she was the first nurse on staff there.
In February of 1957, the family moved to Marshalltown for two and a half years and then moved to Atlantic in 1960. Glen worked as a mechanic and then as a heavy equipment operator for Cass County, until he retired in 1980. Helen worked as an office nurse for doctors, Emil and Millard Petersen. Once the doctors retired she worked at the Cass County Memorial Hospital until she retired in 1983. She was a member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Atlantic.
Their daughter, Debbie, married and had a daughter, Tammy, who was the apple of Glen and Helen’s eye. Tammy was and still is very proud of her Danish roots. She has her grandparents and great-grandparents to thank for that special quality.
Helen had a deep passion for animals and nature. She was an excellent gardener, seamstress and an incredible cook.
Preceding Helen in death were her parents; her husband, Glen; her daughter, Debbie Piearson in 1998; and her siblings, Alice Smith, Robert Petersen and Frank Petersen.
Those left with wonderful memories to cherish are her granddaughter, Tammy (David) Hoop of Coeur D Alene, ID and her grandchildren, Jessica Marie and Jordan Alan.
In lieu of flowers, Helen wanted memorials directed to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church or the Danish American Museum in Elk Horn.
A visitation with family will be held from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., Sunday, November 8, 2020, at Hockenberry Funeral Home in Atlantic, Iowa.
A graveside service will be held at 10:00 a.m., Monday, November 9, 2020, at the Elk Horn Lutheran Cemetery in Elk Horn, Iowa.
Hockenberry Funeral Home in Atlantic, IA, is in charge of the arrangements.