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Obituary: Helen R. Utz

Sat, Mar 11th 2023 07:00 am

Retired Grand Island Central School District Clerk Helen R. Utz passed away peacefully at home on March 3, 2023. She was 92. Helen was born Aug. 11, 1930 in Buffalo.

After graduating from Riverside High School, Helen worked at National Gypsum as an office methods analyst. Additionally, she was one of the founders of the Buffalo Models Guild. This led to her appearing in numerous advertising campaigns, including AM&As, Hens & Kelly’s and, most notably, Helen represented Labatt’s Beer in both print and national television advertisements.

In 1955, Helen married the late Robert F. Utz. Together they lived in Los Angeles, Richmond and Alexandria, Virginia. While in Los Angeles, Helen worked for a vice president and top editor of the Los Angeles Times. When the FBI transferred Robert to Richmond, their family grew by two; and then, after another transfer to Alexandria, the family grew by two more. In 1967, they returned to Western New York and settled on Grand Island, where Helen remained until her death.

While on Grand Island, Helen worked for many years in the Grand Island Central School District, where she retired as the school district clerk. In 2020, when her second FBI special agent son retired, that completed 65 years of Helen’s time as either the wife or mother of FBI agents.

She was devoted to her four children, eight grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. She was an avid gardener as a member of the Bridgeview Garden Club, and tended weekly with the garden ministry at St. Stephen’s Church, working on its beautiful flower displays inside and its abundant, magnificent gardens on the outside.

Helen is survived by her four children: Robert (Maureen) Utz, Karen Utz, Kristine (Donald) Ziemann and Thomas (Susan) Utz; grandchildren Lyndsey (Kyle) Sauer, Robert (Nicole) Utz, Christie (Michael) Davis, Timothy Utz, Sarah Utz, Thomas Utz, Jack Ziemann and Margaret Ziemann; and great-grandchildren Logan Sauer, Rowan Sauer, Jaxon Sauer, Hudson Davis, Hannah Davis, Gianna Davis and Oliver Utz.

 A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated March 7 at St. Stephen’s Church on Grand Island.

If desired, contributions in Helen’s memory may be made to St. Stephen’s Education Foundation, online at ststephenseducationfoundation.org, or by mail to PO Box 1145, Grand Island, NY 14072.

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