Harold John Allen Helms
Harold John Allen Helms, Colonel, U.S. Army, Retired, 81, of Hayesville passed away on Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017 in the Union County Nursing Home in Blairsville following an extended illness.
John was born in Union Springs, Ala. to the late Seba and Dola Mathis Helms and was preceeded in death by his sister, Ruth Spaulding and brother, Gerald Helms. Surviving Col. Helms are his wife of 54 years, Eva Jean Hardin Helms; daughter, Jeannae Geist (Pete) of Charlotte, N.C.; son, Jeff Helms, LTC, U.S. Army, Retired, (Sharon) of Cumming, Ga. and four grandchildren, Evan Geist, Indianapolis, Ind. and Brody, Mabry and Rayann Helms, Cumming.
John attended Auburn University and received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Nebraska, Omaha. His 30+ year military career began as a private in the Alabama National Guard. Among his many medals and awards are the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star and 10 Air Medals. Career highlights include two tours in Vietnam (Ban Me Tout and Qui Nhon), O-1 (Bird Dog) Fixed Wing Pilot, Instructor Pilot in the rotary wing aircraft, Commander, 2/75 Artillery Battalion in Germany and a four year assignment at the Pentagon. Over the course of his career, the Helms family lived in Korea, Germany and nine different states, moving nineteen times.
“Work hard, have fun” was the motto by which John lived. He was an avid reader, golfer and a Master Gardener. John also prepared taxes for low income families with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.
Services with full military honors will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a date to be announced. Per his wish, there will be no local service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research or to the charity of your choice.
Mountain View Funeral Home in Blairsville: www.mountainviewfuneralhome.com is in charge of the arrangements.