Our beloved mother and grandmother, Helen Anna Teleisa Gillespie, 87, passed away Monday, February 23, 2015. She was born October 2, 1927, in Orange, New Jersey, to Anthony and Anna Teleisa.
Helen worked as a Nevada long distance telephone operator, Gilbert was in the army stationed in New Jersey, and he would call his family in Nevada through the operator. He called so often they started recognizing each other’s voice. They started writing each other and finally met in person eight months later and were married in May of 1944, and lived in Wilmington, Delaware. They were later sealed in the Oakland Temple in 1965.
Growing up Helen loved to watch Western movies, one of the things she loved about Gilbert was he was from the West. When Gilbert’s father was injured on his ranch in Nevada, they headed west and both became involved in running the ranch. Gil and Helen opened Dixie Nutrition in St. George, Utah, in 1969, and it has been in the family ever since.
She loved camping and making cookies. She would decorate for each of the holidays but her favorite holiday was Christmas. Her family loved her big “Gillespie” breakfasts and her homemade macaroni and cheese.
She held many positions in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her first calling was primary teacher for the seven year olds. She served many years as relief society president and then stake relief society president. Her greatest calling is that of our mother. She will always be our example and our strength. She loved serving others, giving compassionate service, she exemplified charity Helen and Gilbert served a mission to Lithuania, the land of her parents, in 1993.
She is survived by six of her seven children Gil (LeAnn) of St. George, Utah, Roseann Mulvany, Bill (Judy), Ron (Mindy) Sacramento, California, Rich (Sue) Reno, Nevada, and Alice (Craig) Anderson Murray, Utah; 30 grandchildren, 48 great grandchildren.
She is preceded in death by her parents Anthony and Anna Teleisa, sister Edith Middlemyer, husband Gilbert, son Tony, son-in-law Larry Mulvany, and granddaughter Cassie Macintosh.
The family wishes to thank Dr. Carter and his staff, Heart of Dixie and Seasons Rehab for their special care of Helen.
- Funeral services will be Saturday, Feb. 28, at 2 p.m. at the Sunset 2nd Ward Chapel, 820 North Valley View Drive, St. George, Utah.
- A viewing will be held Friday, Feb. 27, from 6-8 p.m. at Spilsbury Mortuary, 110 South Bluff Street, St. George, and on Saturday, from 12:30-1:30 p.m. prior to services at the chapel.
- Interment will be in the Santa Clara City Cemetery.
Arrangements have been made under the direction of Spilsbury Mortuary, 435-673-2454. Friends and family are invited to sign Helen’s online guestbook at the Spilsbury Mortuary website.