A memorial service for HELEN LUCILLE BUCY will be held at 3 p.m. on Friday, March 3, at Montrose United Methodist Church, where she has been a member since 1999. A light meal will follow.
She was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2006 and is free at last. Helen passed away peacefully on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at Valley Manor Care Center in Montrose, Colorado —her daughter and friend were at her bedside.
Helen, born in Stillwater, Minnesota on July 7, 1924, was the only child of Ernest Alvord Dunlap and Naomi Margaret Peterson. Her father farmed until his sister’s husband died. He moved his family to Tekamah, Nebraska, to help her run their store during the Great Depression. He also had a used car business and gas station and her mother worked at the Creamery.
Helen graduated from Tekamah High School in 1942. Her childhood friend and husband-to-be left school at 17 to join the Marines shortly after Pearl Harbor. She attended Wayne State Teacher’s College, in Wayne, Nebraska, for two years. Dean Ernest Bucy proposed on leave, and they were married in San Diego, California, on March 11, 1944.
After 3 months at Camp Pendleton, he was shipped overseas, and she returned home to Tekamah, Nebraska, pregnant with their daughter, Carol Anne, born Feb. 22, 1945. Dean crushed his foot in the turret of a tank and was medically discharged. Their son, Richard Dean, was born prematurely on March 31, 1946.
After farming for five years, they moved to Omaha, Nebraska, where Dean went to barber college and Helen went to beauty school. With new skills, they worked to put Dean through the University of Nebraska in Lincoln with a degree in agricultural economics. Helen had a one-chair beauty salon in their living room. When Helen’s father died in 1953, her mother moved in with the family to help with child care.
After Dean’s graduation in 1958, they all moved to Denver. He eventually owned and operated the barbershop at the Continental Denver Hotel. Helen was a clerk typist at the Federal Center. Dean gave up barbering and the family in 1961 moved to Grand Junction, where he worked for the Bureau of Reclamation. Helen worked as a secretary for the school district.
Helen and Dean moved to Carson City in 1964, then Sacramento, California, Denver, and eventually to Falls Church, Virginia, where he worked for the Department of Interior in Washington, D.C., until retiring in Denver. It was too cold, so they moved to Folsom, California. Helen moved from Folsom to Montrose in 1998 to live near her daughter after Dean died of cancer. She missed her lifelong love.
Helen was a loyal friend and maintained friendships even dating back to grade school with letters and yearly Christmas cards. Her husband, children and granddaughter adored her. She was gentle, sympathetic, and considerate of others. She always made friends easily and adapted to circumstances. She was a member of Eastern Star, joined the church’s grief support group and loved to read and knit. She will be greatly missed by so many. She is survived by her daughter, Carol Bucy of Montrose; her granddaughter, Beth Liebermann of Prague, Czech Republic; and her son, Richard Bucy and Patricia Hamilton of Duvall, Washington. Interment of her cremains will be the end of May in Hillcrest Cemetery in Decatur, Nebraska. Sunset Mesa Funeral Directors is handling the arrangements in Montrose.