Helene K. LaPorte, age 92, of Ford River, passed away Wednesday, May 6, 2009 at Christian Park Village in Escanaba.
She was born in 1916 to Merville and Anna Kesler, and grew up in difficult times with two sisters, Marjorie Olson of Escanaba and Mary Lou McDonald of Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, and three brothers, deceased; James Kesler, John Kesler and Patrick Kesler. She was married to Paul R. LaPorte until his death in 1986. During their marriage they owned and operated the Granada Bar for many years. Helene was a member of several community organizations, including Lady Elks, Escanaba Country Club and was a life long member of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, serving on the alter guild for over 40 years. She supported the Bonifas Arts Center and did volunteer work at the library.
She was an avid and winning bridge player, and in her earlier years played golf and had wonderful times with her ladies bowling team. Swimming was another passion, both in Lake Michigan, and in the YMCA water aerobics classes she attended until age 90.
Her loving and dedicated family include her daughters, Kathleen (Dan) Creten, and Suzanne (Lynn) Voeks, who will always remember their June getaways, covering all the places Helene wanted to experience in her lifetime; the Grand Canyon, Niagra Falls, Mount Rushmore, Caribbean Cruises and visits to California to visit her brothers.
Helene’s son, Paul Conrad LaPorte, preceded her in death. Helene was loving grandmother to Greg (Diane) LaPorte, Yvonne (Brian) Pike, Matt Walechka, Mark LaPorte, Sara (Robert) Dunstone, Amy (Michael) Creten Tucker, Jennifer Voeks, Christian (Christina) Voeks, and Carrie (Aaron) Sabel. She was the best “GG” to Amber Walechka, Chris Walechka, Nick Walechka, Marissa LaPorte, Lincoln and Margeaux Dunstone, Harrison and Jordan Tucker, Hannah and Ellie Sabel and Sam Voeks. Helene’s many friends will remember her welcoming smile, her hospitality, and her “wide shoulders”. She will be deeply missed.
A memorial service will be held on Sunday, May 10, at 4:00pm at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Escanaba.
Memorials may be directed to the YMCA Strong Kids Fund, the Bonifas Arts Center, or the Friends of the Escanaba Library.
The LaPorte family is being assisted by theSkradski Funeral Home in Escanaba.