Mary Helmann

Mary Helmann

Mary Helmann

Mary Jane Helmann, age 99, of Portage, Wisconsin passed away Thursday, June 13, 2024, at Hamilton Park Place in Portage, Wisconsin.

Mary Jane was born April 7, 1925, in Portage, to John and Ethel (Fitzpatrick) Helmann. After graduating from Portage High School, Mary Jane went on to become a Notre Dame nun in Minnesota for 17 years. Mary Jane then went independent to receive her RN nursing degree. Mary Jane moved to Seattle for 40 years. She worked for Group Health as a traveling nurse. She also was a nanny for families after retirement. Mary Jane loved Seattle, Mt. Rainier, Puget Sound, and had many forever friends. She loved to bake, sew created table runners etc. to give as gifts to family and friends. She was an animal lover and always had dogs and cats, the last two were Meg & Lilly. She was a member of St. Mary’s Church.

Mary Jane was preceded in death by her parents; partner, Mary Irene Tembreull; siblings Colleen Hollender, Joan Helmann, Fay Ashley, Bill Helmann; brothers-in-law Robert Hollender, Bob Ashley & friends Clara Wanner & Don Hebl.

Mary Jane is survived by her sister Sr. Virginia Helmann (Ginger); sister-in-law Ruthann Helmann; cousin Judy Hebl; friend Sr. Ann Mallman; nieces Debby (Rich) Klaila, Jane (Herb) Jahn, Joan (Gary) Lobenstein, Cindy (Mike) Miles, Colleen (Dale) Lane, and nephews John Ashley (Mark Matosian) Mike (Stephanie) Helmann and John Helmann. Mary Jane is also survived by numerous great and great-great nieces and nephews.

Mary Jane will be forever loved and forever missed!

A Memorial Mass will be 2:00 p.m. on Friday, June 21, 2024, at the St. Mary’s Church in Portage. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to St. Mary’s Church, Portage or Columbia County Humane Society, N7768 Industrial Rd. Portage, WI 53901.

Roseberry’s Funeral Home is assisting the family. Visit for online condolences and further information.

Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Diana schieber says:

    To the family of Mary Jane I’m sorry for your loss she was a wonderful person I took care of her at Hamilton park place and she was a hoot I’m glad she is with her god.. where she can be at peace again my condolences … Diana Schieber


    I am very sorry for your loss. I got to know Mary Jane when she called the office one day confused about paperwork, we were the wrong office. I went to her apartment after work to help straighten out what was happening with her insurance (not my line of work) and what I thought would be stopping once to help get something taken care of for a confused sweet lady, turned into a weekly check-in and help with mail and paperwork. She made me blueberry bread, gave me a square blue glass jar with a bunch of blank greeting cards and made me a table runner. She was a sweet lady and will be remembered fondly.

  3. Sarah Ellison says:

    My family has loved Mary Jane since she took care of the children as babies, nearly 35 years ago in Seattle. She was a member of the family in our eyes, and such a lovely friend to me. We missed her when she returned to her Wisconsin family but visited her in Portage and kept in close touch by phone and letters. She sewed quilts for the children, and made table runners and coasters we all cherish. She remains a very special person in the lives of Marion and Mark, now adults, who remember Mary Jane attending their piano recitals and choir concerts. Mary Jane loved books, music, movies and loved talking about them in detail over coffee. She brought a lifetime of wisdom to any conversation, from her experiences as a Catholic sister, as a nurse, and as a loving and thoughtful human being. Knowing her was a joy and a blessing. Rest in peace, Mary Jane.

  4. Sandra brede says:

    Met MaryJane at the start of my quilting life. We both learned quilting together. I aways thought MaryJane was an angel, my angel .
    God bless her and tell her to meet me with open arms at the end of my lifetime.

  5. Vickie Miller says:

    Sympathy to the family

  6. MaryAnn Premoe says:

    It was a BLESSING and a Gift to have MaryJane as a friend co-worker and quilter in Seattle WA.
    I always considered her an Angel to me and all she knew.

  7. Bill Gilmore says:

    What a blessing to have known Mary Jane for over three decades. She was my upstairs neighbor in Seattle and I would often invite her down for a latte. Of course she always arrived with a delicious treat she had made. Her blueberry bread was memorable and I still make it using her recipe. She was the most giving person I’ve ever known, but the greatest gift was her friendship. I cherish that along with all the beautiful memories. Mary Jane was the best!

  8. Barbara Hill says:

    Mary Jane was such a knowledgeable person ! Always ready to converse on whatever subject and always ready to share her love of Seattle! We shared BOOKS and countless conversations ! I will be forever grateful for her friendship and time spent with her and Lily !!! Priceless ! Rest in Peace, Mary Jane ! Know you are back in the company of your adored fur babies and countless loved ones and acquaintances! Until we meet again …. Barb Hill, Portage, WI

  9. Bev HARRISON says:

    MaryJane was one of the sweetest people! I remember how devoted she was to her garden and her dogs and I’m glad that I knew her even just a little bit.

  10. Laura Robins-Morris says:

    Mary Jane will be remembered by many in Seattle. She was always kind, thoughtful and generous. 35 years ago she started a small group of quilting friends (the Sew-Sew Quilters) and we still meet after all this time. She was creative and loved bright colors, and sewed many gifts for people. She was energetic, fun to be around, and interested in many things including music, theater, travel, gardening, her pets, and people. She was one of the finest people I have ever known.