Helen Louise (Paine) Gardner, 83, died January 26, 2004 at Walnut Grove, California,
following a lingering illness.
Helen was born April 23, 1920 in Eagle Grove, Iowa, to Morris and Henrietta Paine, the
middle child of nine children. Her childhood was spent in Ree Heights, South Dakota where she attended school through her junior year. In 1936, the dust bowl years of the Depression drove her family west, and they located in Wenatchee, Washington, where Helen graduated from high school.
She worked as a secretary for a few years. In the summer of 1942, she married Owen
"Bud" Gardner. After Bud finished his master's degree he entered the Navy, and Helen
followed Bud from post to post during the World War II years.
After the war, Bud began working for Kaiser Aluminum and the family located in
Spokane Valley, Washington. In 1964, they went to Kobe, Japan, for the next five years,
and on their return, settled at Oakland, California. They returned to Japan for three years, this time in Tokyo.
Returning to Oakland, Bud continued his work with Kaiser until his retirement in 1982. In
the mid-80s, Bud and Helen returned to Japan for another year to assist missionary
friends, teaching English to Japanese church members.
A stroke in 1995 left Helen with a speech impairment and right-side physical problems,
and she was helped to recovery by The Aphasia Center of California.
Her lifetime focus was on her family. She kept in close touch with her brothers and
sisters, with many relatives in the Midwest, and with old friends from the Navy and Kaiser
She was very active in her church throughout her life, and was a member of the Montclair
Presbyterian Church in Oakland, California for more than 30 years.
She is survived by her husband of nearly 62 years; four sons, Owen "Bud" Jr. of Omak,
Washington, Roger and Jamie of Los Alamos, New Mexico, and Paul of San Lorenzo, California; seven grandchildren; her sister Mary Lodge of Wenatchee, Washington; and brothers Jamie Paine of Salem, Oregon, Paul Paine of Honolulu, Hawaii, and Harry Paine of Cowiche, Washington.
Memorial gifts may be directed to The Aphasia Center of California, 3996 Lyman Road,
Oakland, California. 94602.
Helen Paine Gardner
Hand County, South Dakota Genealogy & Family Research Center
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