Helen G. Magnusson, 97

Helen Magnusson

WINDHAM — Helen G. Magnusson, 97, passed away Saturday, April 14, 2018, at Ledgewood Manor in Windham, with family by her side.

She was born in Hayfield, Minnesota, on Feb. 17, 1921, the oldest daughter of Albin and Hannah (Telleen) Norine. Her family moved to Gowrie, Iowa shortly after her birth, where she attended Gowrie schools. She was very active in 4-H, holding several offices in the organization over the years, including county president. Helen graduated from Iowa State Teachers College and taught for two years in Correctionville, Iowa before marrying her high school sweetheart, Harris Magnusson in 1943 in New Port, Rhode Island. Helen arrived by train from Iowa the day before their wedding. She often joked that Harris was the only one she knew at their wedding and appreciated that he, his fellow naval officers and their wives did a beautiful job of planning their big day.

At the end of WWII, the couple moved to Fort Dodge, Iowa, where Harris took a job as a mortgage banker and Helen became mom to a daughter and three sons. Along with raising a busy family of four, Helen was a dedicated community and church servant. She was very active in the Grace Lutheran Church in Fort Dodge, and volunteered as Campfire Girl and Cub Scout leader for several years. She also held several offices in PEO, a philanthropic education organization that financially supports higher education for women around the world. Just recently she was pleased to be awarded her 50-year membership pin.

Helen enjoyed sewing, reading, golfing and Bible study. Her greatest joy was her family and wonderful summer memories were made when they all gathered at the family cottage at Lake Okoboji in Iowa. Her gentle, kind, steadfast spirit will be deeply missed by all who knew her.

Helen and Harris moved to Florida after his retirement and spent over 20 years there. While in Florida, Helen dedicated herself to a sewing ministry that made clothing for infants born to poor families and single mothers. She was passionate that no child should be brought home or buried without wearing something special made with love. They then relocated to Center Conway, N.H., to be closer to family.  While there they became members of the Lutheran Church of the Nativity in North Conway, N.H. After her husband passed away in 2007, Helen moved to Maine, even closer to family, where she resided until her passing.

She is survived by a daughter, Norine (Gary) Burhite of Bridgton;  sons, Kurt (Joan) Magnusson of Bremen; Kent (Sara) Magnusson of San Antonio, Tex.,; and Kyle (Lori) Magnusson of Henrico, N.C.; brothers Russ Norine of Palacious, Tex., Ray Norine of Gowrie, Iowa; 12 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, her sister Florence McCubbin Targgart, as well as five sisters-in-law, and five brothers-in-law.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, June 2 at 11 a.m., at The Bridgton Alliance Church, Bridgton. A second memorial service will be held in August at Zion Lutheran Church in Gowrie, Iowa with interment to follow at the Gowrie Cemetery.

Those wishing to make donations in memory of Helen Magnusson may do so to the Lutheran Church of the Nativity, 15 Grove Street, North Conway, NH 03860.

Arrangements are under the care of Fleury-Patry Funeral Home. Online guestbook at www.fleury-patry.com

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