Jerry William Helmke 88, passed on May 23, 2022 peacefully at Sunny View Care Center, Ankeny, Iowa.
Jerry was born at home on April 2, 1934, Renwick, Iowa. to William H. Helmke and Hilda (Boge) Helmke. Jerry was the 5th of six children. Growing up, Jerry worked on the family farm, loved riding horses and was involved in 4-H. He was a four year letter winner in sports. He graduated from Renwick High School in 1952 and worked at Gilmer Creamery Eagle Grove, Renwick Chevrolet and Renwick Creamery. The Helmke farm was the first to receive electricity in Wright County.
On May 26, 1957, Jerry was united in marriage to Mardelle Joyce Larson. They lived in Renwick until they moved to Humboldt in 1959, where they raised five children. He started working for REC in 1957 and worked there until he retired in April 1996 as a foreman.
Jerry enjoyed singing in a harmony Barbershop Quartet. He pitched on a slow pitch softball team, enjoyed snowmobiling and motorcycling. Jerry was an avid hunter and fisherman. Jerry roasted whole hogs and enjoyed roasting for weddings, parties and fundraisers. He spent many years golfing in the men’s league at Humboldt Country Club. Summers were spent at Twin Lakes with family and friends and winters were spent in Weslaco, TX. with his wife Mardelle. He enjoyed spending time with family.
Jerry is survived by his 5 children; Angela (Jeff) Paulson, Ogden; Shelly (Randy) Hatch, Ankeny; Mitchell Helmke, Dumont; Carmala (John) Pitt, Ankeny and Jennifer (Tim) Kapsch, Ankeny. Survivors also include 13 grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren, sister Jancie Basler, Humboldt and several nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents, wife Mardelle, an infant son Randy and two infant grandchildren, Hilda and Clara. His brother Norman Helmke, sisters; Lavonne Peer, Kathryn Duffy and Gretchen Rininger.
Graveside Celebration of Life Service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 31st at Vernon Township Cemetery, rural Renwick. A reception will follow in Humboldt. www.masonlindhart.com
To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Jerry W. Helmke please visit our Sympathy Store.