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Ray M. Helfrich

Published: Thursday, May 22, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT
Ray M. Helfrich

BYRON – Ray M. Helfrich, 76, of Byron, died Saturday, May 17, 2014, at Serenity Hospice & Home in Oregon. He was an Army sergeant major, retiring after 30 years of service.

Ray was born April 10, 1938, in Dixon, the son of Ray Elwin and Dorothy (Schulte) Helfrich. He married Hwa Sun Lee on March 17, 1979, in Clarksville, Tenn.

Survivors include his wife of Byron; three daughters, Melissa (Patrick) McKenna of Pleasanton, California, Sandra Griffey of Tennessee, and Brenda (Wayne) Watson of South Carolina; two brothers, Dick (Mary) Helfrich of Dixon and Marvin (Susan) Helfrich of Oregon; three sisters, Donna Marie Hall of Port Byron, Wanda Lee (Don) Apple of Sterling, and Margery Louise (John) Simmons of East Peoria; four grandsons; and two great-grandsons.

He was preceded in death by his parents, and one son, Ray Elwin Jr.

Visitation will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Friday and the funeral at 3 p.m. Friday at Preston-Schilling Funeral Home in Dixon, with the Rev. Janet Wittenmyer, pastor of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Dixon, officiating. Cremation rites will be accorded.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established to the Wounded Warrior Project.

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