On Sunday, August 2, 2020, Helen Edna (Sheldon) DeHaas of Council, Idaho, loving wife and mother of three children, passed away in her home surrounded by family. Helen was born on March 30, 1938 in Emmett, Idaho to Robert and Santa Sheldon. She married her high school sweetheart, Merle Arthur DeHaas, on October 27, 1955 and together they raised three sons, Merle Jr. (Pat), Terry, and Timothy.
An avid bird enthusiast who could often name a bird and its migration patterns from a simple description over the phone, she spent countless hours through the years feeding and watching the hummingbirds she loved so much.
As part of her Basque heritage, she immersed herself in the Basque culture where she took advantage of her passion for reading and became the expert on her family’s history. She was always quick with a nugget of Basque history and a large helping of Basque Rice.
Helen was admired for her strength of character and her dedication to the community she called home. As a member of the Council High School staff, she found joy in mentoring and advocating for many, many young people including the Council High Cheerleader Team. She was often known by her colleagues as a consummate professional and the champion of the underdog.
Helen was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband of 65 years, Merle; her three children; Pat (Melissa), Terry (Peggy), and Tim (Shannon); her brothers Terry and John; and her sister Judy. She is also survived by 10 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren, 2 great-great-grandchildren, many nieces, nephews, and countless friends.
A graveside service is being held for immediate family. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Helen’s memory to the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, 611 West Grove Street, Boise, Idaho 83702.
Graveside services for Helen will be held at 11:00 AM on Thursday, August 6, 2020 at the Emmett Cemetery.
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