OBITUARY: Helen Winton Whitney

Age 80 of Wayzata, MN on Saturday, January 29, 2011 at her home in Hobe Sound, FL surrounded by her family.

Born July 4, 1930 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She was preceded in death by her husband, J. Kimball Whitney in November 2010; her parents, Charles Joel Winton, Jr. and Henrietta McDonald Winton; and her brother, Charles Joel Winton III. Survived by her three children, David K. Whitney (Javier Joel Cisneros); Lucy Whitney Standish (Craig); and Kimball Whitney (Chris Occhi); and six grandchildren, Whitney and Logan Ness; Charlie, Claire, Jack and Molly Standish. Also survived by her sister, Judy W. Dayton, and her brother, McDonald Winton (Betty).

Helen grew up in Minneapolis and graduated from Northrop Collegiate School in 1948; she graduated from Bradford Junior College in 1950; and from Goucher College in 1952. She and Kim were married on June 1, 1954 at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Minneapolis, and they spent the next 56 years hopelessly in love with each other. She and Kim adopted their three children, and she devoted more than fifty years of her life to being the kind of mother that made them proud to be her family.

As so many of her friends know, Helen was a lifelong flower gardener. A longtime member of the Lake Minnetonka Garden Club, she was always keen to improve the look of her gardens. Her passion in later years was for raising and displaying Dahlias, which earned her the nickname “The Dahlia Lady.”

She was a devoted wife, mother, and steadfast community supporter, giving much of her time to many organizations with their focus on the arts, music, and community involvement. She served on the Board of Big Sisters, now known as Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities, and was involved in many other social organizations. Helen also carried on a century-long family tradition of support for Westminster Presbyterian Church.

Helen and Kim loved to travel, and they went literally all over the world. Some of their most memorable trips were taken with close friends and usually involved playing golf somewhere near their destination. Winters were spent at their home in Hobe Sound, FL, where she and Kim had many close friends. It was only fitting that, in January, she was able to travel to Florida to see so many of her dearest friends, and spend time in the sun.

Helen fought a brave battle with bladder cancer over the final year of her life. She was the picture of poise, grace and elegance throughout her ordeal, bringing smiles and cheer to family and friends alike, despite her illness. It is the memory of her always-upbeat approach to life that her friends and loved ones can hold closest in their hearts. She always saw the good in everything, and everyone.

Helen’s family wishes to express their profound gratitude to the caregivers who provided such tender support and loving care to both Helen and Kim: Jennifer Benson, Kimberly Haglund, Angie Bammert, Stephanie Salonek, and Ereyna Haugen. Also, thanks go to the Allina Home Hospice Team, led by Beverly Hood, for outstanding care and compassion.

A private interment was held on February 4, 2011 at Lakewood Cemetery in Minneapolis. A memorial service will be held at 3:30 PM Thursday May 19, 2011 at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1200 Marquette Avenue, Minneapolis.

In lieu of flowers, memorials should be directed to: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, 3675 Arboretum Drive, Chaska, MN 55318; Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1200 Marquette Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403; or Abbott Northwestern Hospital Foundation, 800 East 28th Street, Minneapolis, MN 55407.

David Lee Funeral Home
Wayzata 952-473-5577

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