Helena Fitzgerald Ryan, a lifelong resident of Oxford, New York, passed away peacefully on January 14th at the age of 88.
Born on February 1, 1929, Helena was a deeply devoted daughter, sister, aunt, wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She married her husband G. Richard Ryan on June 24, 1950. She worked on the family dairy farm her entire life, and would often describe herself, as "just an old farmer." She worked for the Chenango County Board of Elections, was a hearing attendant at the Chenango County Courthouse, a clerk at Stradling Auction Barn in Norwich NY, a member of the St. Joseph Alter Rosary society, and in her later years enjoyed spending time as a volunteer at the Common Cents Thrift Store in Oxford.
Those that knew her, will remember Helena as incredibly generous, smart and kind. She taught all of us the value of family, humor, dancing, music, forgiveness, how to love and feed every animal that ever crossed your path, and that going outside to get some fresh air, could fix so many things. She loved life so much.
Helena was proceeded in death by her parents Lydia D. and John M. Fitzgerald, husband G. Richard Ryan, sons Thomas, and Dennis Ryan, sisters Jessie Weidman, Marguerite Place, and brother William Fitzgerald.
She will be missed dearly, by her daughters Kathleen (Ray) Baldwin, Susan Ryan (Greg Nelson), Teresa (Rick) Borchardt, daughter-in-law Jennie Ryan, Grandchildren Adam (Jennifer) Ryan, Rebecca (Adge) Denkers, Daniel Gladis (Jami Szalla), Trevor Borchardt, Connor Borchardt, David Nelson, and great grandchildren Richard Ryan, Hannah Ryan, Ellie Ryan, and Fitzie Denkers.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Helena's name be made to the Dennis E. Ryan memorial scholarship fund at Oxford Academy Central High School, by contacting Kate Constantine.
The family would also like to sincerely thank the staff on the Star Unit at James G. Johnston Nursing Home for all their compassionate care and support, as well as Pat and Ellen for their love, support and care of their mom while she remained home.
Calling hours for family and friends of Helena will be on Friday January 19th, 5:00 - 7:00 PM at Behe Funeral home 21 Main Street, Oxford, NY 13830. A mass will be held at St. Joseph's Catholic Church on Saturday January 20, 2018 at 11:00 AM. Friends and family may share their memories and condolences by visiting www.behefuneralhome.com