Cover photo for Eva Opal Heffner Helton, 93's Obituary

Eva Opal Heffner Helton, 93

Eva Opal Heffner Helton, 93

October 5, 1924 - January 11, 2018

Eva was born in Elk City, Oregon on October 5, 1924 to Wanda Ellen Dodds Heffner and Earl Cedric Heffner. The family was there for work at a logging camp. They returned to the family homestead at Eagle, Idaho in November, 1925 and she spent her childhood there.

From 1945 to 1955, Eva moved around the country, living in Eastern Idaho, Utah, Pennsylvania, and Washington State. During this time she married and divorced 4 times. After returning to Eagle, she married Leslie Helton on February 9, 1956, and this time it stuck. Their sometimes loud, but always devoted marriage lasted 43 years until Leslie’s death in March 1999.

In her early years, Eva worked in mining and logging camps, at a glass blowing factory, a candy factory and commercial laundries. Most of her life was spent as a wife, mother and homemaker, though she was a Master Graphoanalist (handwriting) and also trained in astrology. She provided mail order readings as a cottage industry.

Eva was a strong willed individual with a dry, sometimes irreverent sense of humor. She loved and cared for her family, often sacrificing to see they were safe and provided for.

Throughout her life, Eva was a student and a seeker of knowledge with a wide range of interests. She was a voracious reader of many subjects including religion, neuroscience, poetry, autobiography, psychology, fiction, mysteries, science fiction and humor. Books were precious to her and she lived among stacks of them.

At one time, she got a florist’s license and filled the house, porch and back patio with pots of exotic plants, succulents being her favorite. Another time she got interested in painting landscapes and filled a big stack of canvases before moving on.

Eva had a phenomenal memory for names, dates and events and loved to collect and share family history and stories from her own life. She was a dedicated letter writer and maintained a long and rich correspondence with a large circle of friends and extended family.

Also a prolific poet, Eva produced thousands of poems, making a goal of at least one a day for years at a time. Quirky, emotional and often humorous, her works have occasionally been published, but mostly shared with family and friends, or simply piled up. They represent a window into her life and heart, a treasure for her descendants.

Eva was preceded in death by her husband Leslie, son John, daughter Anita and grandson Nicholas. She is survived by her son Randy, grandchildren Troy, Cheri, Randi, Mia and Nathaniel as well as 11 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great grandchildren.

Family and friends will be welcomed to a Celebration of Life for Eva and Leslie to be held Tuesday, April 3, 2018, from 4:00 to 8:00 PM at Trinity Lutheran Church in Nampa, Idaho, following a family gathering and interment at the Star Cemetery, Star, Idaho.
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