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Helen Hubbard



Helen Lucille Clark was born on June 19, 1924 in a house on Grand Avenue on the east side of Des Moines, Iowa. She is the eighth child of Alice May (Rose) and Charles Frederick Clark. Helen graduated from East High School in June, 1942 and worked as a clerk at Bausch and Lomb. She lived at home with Alice until she married. Helen and Alice attended the Reformed Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints.


Helen met Merle William Hubbard on a blind date in April, 1955. They were introduced by a mutual friend. Helen and Merle were married on December 31, 1955. They lived in a house at 3831 55th Street in Des Moines. Helen hated the cold weather, so she and Merle moved to Houston, Texas in 1964. They eventually bought the house at 3610 Burgundy Lane. Helen continued to work at Bausch and Lomb until she retired. Helen and Merle loved animals and had several dogs over the years, Itty Bity, King, Pudgy, and Duke. In Helen’s later years she had cats, Striper Ray. Merle died in 1985.


While in Texas Helen attended Broadway Baptist Church. One of her activities was to write letters to shut-ins to be a bright spot in the lives of people she’d never met.


Helen had six brothers, Delbert, Thurman, Ervin (Slim), Marlin (Chuck), Leon (Shorty), and Harley. (Orville and Odessa died in infancy.) Her love of family has been key in making her the family historian. She remembers everyone’s birthday and makes phone calls or sends cards to wish a happy birthday. She also kept track of addresses and phone numbers and sent out about 150 Christmas cards each year. She is notorious for being the 1st one to send out her Christmas cards, even before Thanksgiving.


Helen sold her house and moved back to Des Moines in June, 2008. She lived with her widowed brother, Harley, for about 8 years. Helen attended high school reunions, had lunch with friends, joined the Red Bonnet Biddies, went to the Senior Center, attended Clark and Clemenson reunions, is a life-time member of Eastern Star, and loved to get her nails done. Her sense of humor kept everyone laughing.


She passed away on May 25, 2022, less than one month shy of her 98th birthday. Hers was a life well lived. A graveside service will be held on Saturday, May 28 at 10:00 AM at Merle Hay Funeral Home and Chapel Hill Gardens on 4400 Merle Hay Rd. Des Moines, IA 50310.