Helen Beneke Byington, 93, of Iowa City, died peacefully Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, at Oaknoll Health Center. A memorial service to celebrate Helen's life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in her name to Camp Courageous in Monticello, Oaknoll Foundation or St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church.
Helen was born June 22, 1926, in Cedar Falls, Iowa, the daughter of Herman and Ethyl Wilson Beneke. She graduated from Estherville High School in Estherville, Iowa, before serving as a cadet nurse for the Cadet Nurse Corps. She later graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in nursing. She married William Moss Byington on April 28, 1948, in Iowa City.
Together, they operated Whetstone's Drug Store since the 50s in downtown Iowa City, where Helen served as the office manager for seven years.
She was a member of St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church (and also was a charter member); a volunteer for the Iowa City/Coralville Convention and Visitors Bureau; volunteered at the Herbert Hoover Library Foundation and Mercy Iowa City; was a member of Robert Lucas Chapter of the Questers, ADCA (Antique Doorknob Collectors Association), Mercy Home Health Care, PEO Chapter KQ and was a consumer representative on the advisory committee of the Johnson County Historical Society.
Helen is survived by her two daughters, Lee Ann Muller of Walker Valley, N.Y., and Karly (Randy) Beavers of Johnston; her sister, Linda J. Hessel of Hoffman Estates, Ill.; and two grandchildren, Bethany Beavers of Escondido, Calif., and Maggie (Brad) Pitcher of Box Elder, S.D.
She was preceded in death by her husband, William; parents, Herman and Ethyl Beneke; two brothers, Dale and Dean Beneke; her daughter, Mary Lynn; and two sons who died at birth.