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Helen Kovach Gildzen Print E-mail

Helen GildzenHelen Kovach Gildzen, 94 years old, passed away at Life Care Center of Elyria on April 4, 2016. Mrs. Gildzen was born Sept. 14, 1921 in Akron, Ohio. The family later moved to Lorain, Ohio.

She married Alex Gildzen in 1942. Their son, Alex John, was born the following year. For most of her life Mrs. Gildzen was a homemaker. She was an avid reader, a devotee of garage sales, a collector of dolls and a cook who delighted in sharing as much as she enjoyed the culinary efforts of family and friends.

For many years she collected autographs. In 1992 she donated her large collection to the Kent State University Libraries. That gift was noted in an article by novelist Thrity Umrigar in the Akron Beacon Journal. Her collection included the signatures of Robert Altman, Lucille Ball, Bill Cinton, Doris Day, Thom Gunn, Agnes Martin, Rosa Parks and Andy Warhol. In 1997 the library put on the exhibition "From the Autograph Collection of Helen Kovach Gildzen." The catalog included an introduction by her son in which he wrote "when I was a boy growing up in Elyria we'd walk from the red brick house Dad built the couple miles to town. It wasn't such a long walk but it became long because Mother stopped so often along the way to greet old friends or start up conversations with new ones."

Mrs. Gildzen was the subject of both poems and art pieces by her son, as well as art work by Bill E. Berger. Her name is on a brick in a park in downtown Akron. She was a member of Pilgrim United Church of Christ.

Mrs. Gildzen was preceded in death by her husband Alex Gildzen, her parents, John and Mary Kovach, and her siblings John Kovach, Mary Yando, Francis M. Kovach, Sophie Hause.

She is survived by her son Alex Gildzen of Santa Fe, N.M., many nieces and nephews, good neighbors and countless friends.

There will be no calling hours or services, upon her request. Burial will be in Ridgehill Memorial Park, Amherst Township, Ohio.

The Reichlin Roberts Funeral Home, 327 Cleveland Street, Elyria, Ohio is handling the arrangements.

» 8 Condolences and Greetings
j.Charles Walker
sent Thursday, 18 August 2016 07:13
Alex. It is only today 8/18/16 that I found out about Helen\\\'s passing on April 04. I was very sorry to hear and know how much you loved her. She, and your father were always good to me and to my mother. My sincerest condolences.
Kent Taylor
sent Saturday, 09 April 2016 05:56
Sensed how close you two were from your posts over the years. Deep condolences to you old friend.
John Burroughs
sent Friday, 08 April 2016 19:12
Mrs. Gildzen was a dear and to me legendary woman. Sending all love your way, Alex.
Sharon Mencl
sent Tuesday, 05 April 2016 17:35
I will always have fond memories of Helen. She lived across the street from Emelie and John Sheetz, my grandparents. Helen never missed a chance to visit with my 3 children and myself whenever we were visiting my grandparents. Helen never came empty handed. She always had some sort of gifts for my children. She always had a smile for us and I am sorry for your loss. Nothing compares to saying goodbye to your mom. God Bless you and your family
Alice Hook
sent Tuesday, 05 April 2016 15:08
My therapy dog Emma, a toy poodle, and I were weekly visitors to Helen at Life Care Center of Elyria. We always came in and sat on the edge of Helen\\\'s bed, next to her phone, facing her wheelchair. One day Emma\\\'s paw hit the speakerphone key on Helen\\\'s phone by mistake. Helen picked up the receiver, put it up to Emma\\\'s ear and said, \\\"do you want to make a call?\\\" Ever since that day, whenever we came to visit, she always asked Emma if she wanted to make a phone call. Helen was one of our favorite residents to visit. She loved Emma and Emma loved her. We will both miss her very much. We extend our deepest sympathies to her family. Alice M. Hook & Emma
Patty Drews
sent Tuesday, 05 April 2016 06:38
So very sorry for your loss. I delivered her mail once a week and it would be such a treat to open the mailbox and find the candy or baked goods she would leave for the carriers. Always came at the right time of day when I needed that extra boost to finish the route! May her soul rest in peace. God Bless all of you.
Gary and Char Hrusch
sent Tuesday, 05 April 2016 05:40
We are so very sorry, Alex. We have always admired her generosity and independence, We fondly remember, too, how excited she would always be when we stopped by with a pie, a cake, cookies, or candy. Her sweet tooth was enormous!! And we most enjoyed sharing her sweets. I am sorry we could not see her in her later years, as I am not supposed to visit hospitals or nursing homes because of my own precarious health. We did leave her candy at the front desk, but rarely heard from her, so not sure she always got our gifts. But we ar not sure she knew how much we loved her. We hope you do, too.
Bob Barnes -Ft Worth TX
sent Monday, 04 April 2016 18:21
Alex, we should all be so lucky to live a full life like your mom. I am glad you had such a long, loving relationship. Your parents were obviously very special people to have had such a special son. Hugs, friend.
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