Helen M. Lenz, 88, longtime resident of Iowa City, died on Monday, Feb. 19, 2018, surrounded by her family at Pleasantview Home in Kalona.
There will be a time for family and friends to gather for a period of visitation from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24, at Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service. Following this, private family services are planned with burial to follow at Memory Gardens Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in her memory to Lone Tree American Legion Post 457 or Pleasantview Home. To share a thought, memory or condolence, please visit the funeral home website at www.gayandciha.com.
Helen was born Nov. 18, 1929, the daughter of Edward and Zora Schlapkohl on the family farm south of Lone Tree. Following graduation from Lone Tree High School in 1948, she worked in Lone Tree at the seed/feed mill until its closure. She then began working at Procter & Gamble in Iowa City in 1956 in the payroll office. On Nov. 23, 1960, she was united in marriage to James "Jim" W. Lenz. After raising her two sons, Helen returned to work at the University of Iowa in the purchasing department as a clerk typist until her retirement. Many people over the years would see Helen walking from the Jefferson Building after work. You could offer her a ride, but the answer was always the same, "no rain, snow, heat or cold..." This walking continued even into retirement, as many would witness her walking her dog, Sammie, along Muscatine Avenue or Scott Boulevard. Helen took great joy in providing the home for all the neighborhood boys who would come over and hang out there. They always felt welcome and spoiled as Helen always had their favorite kind of pop and treats on hand, no matter what.
Helen was a longtime member of First United Methodist Church in Iowa City where she was active in many parts of church life, including teaching Sunday school for many years. She also enjoyed feeding the birds outside her home, tending to her roses and cheering on anything Hawkeyes or Chicago Cubs. She also enjoyed bowling for many years, and for many of those years she bowled on the John's Grocery Store team in league play.
Her family includes two sons, Bill Lenz (Lisa) and Tim Lenz (Leah); grandchildren, Eli, Caitlin and Ava; and brothers, Hank Schlapkohl (Maxine) and Bill Schlapkohl (Virginia). She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Jim; and son, Robert.