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Sun., Oct. 4
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Stella Helmecki


Stella (Stacia) Helmecki, 88, of Shickshinny, and formerly of Nanticoke, passed away peacefully at her home surrounded by her loving family on Saturday, June 30, 2012.

Born January 21, 1924 in Nanticoke, she was a daughter of the late Stanley, Sr., and Michelina (Ostrowski Bielarski) Rychlicki. She married John Joseph Helmecki in Wilkes-Barre on June 23, 1951. Following her graduation as a Practical Nurse from the Chicago School of Nursing in 1950, she worked at Retreat State Hospital, then at Nanticoke State General Hospital, until her retirement in 1986.

She was a member of St. Mary’s (Our Lady of Czestochowa) Church, Nanticoke for most of her life, and was most recently a member of St. Mary’s Church (Holy Spirit Parish), Mocanaqua. She was devoted to the Blessed Mother, chose “Mary” as her Confirmation name, and recited the rosary daily.

Stella enjoyed music immensely, especially Polish and Latin. She had a beautiful singing voice, and also loved to dance.

She was preceded in death by her husband John in 2001; and by siblings Helen Bierdziewski, Genevieve Wasilewski, Verna Mace, Joseph Bielarski, and Frank Rychlicki.

She will be deeply missed by her loving family: daughters Michaelene Geiser and her husband Richard, Massena, N. Y.; Kathleen Sowa, Berwick; Jacqueline Blackburn and her husband Mark, Benton; grandchildren Bridgid Bartkiewicz, Boston; Jesse Sowa, Shickshinny; James and Rheanna Blackburn, Benton; brother, Stanley Rychlicki, Caledonia, N. Y.; nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held Monday July 2, at 8:45 A.M. from the Charles L. Cease Funeral Home, 634 Reyburn Road., Shickshinny, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 9.30 A.M. in Holy Spirit Parish/St. Mary’s Church, 150 Main Street, Mocanaqua, with the Rev. Anthony Generose, as celebrant.

Interment was in Chapel Lawn Memorial Park, Dallas.

Memorial contributions may be made to: American Red Cross, 256 N. Sherman St., Wilkes-Barre, Pa., 18702, or to the donor’s favorite animal shelter.

The family wishes to thank the staff at Geisinger Wyoming Valley PCU, and at Celtic Hospice, for their outstanding care.

For directions or online condolences please visit

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