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Recitation of the Rosary

St. John the Apostle Catholic Church (Oregon City!)
Tuesday November 9th, 2021

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Funeral Mass

St. John the Apostle Catholic Church (Oregon City!)
Tuesday November 9th, 2021

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Committal Service

Willamette National Cemetery
Tuesday November 9th, 2021

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Helen Rose Montoya

On October 25, 2021, Helen Rose Montoya (Mom and Nana) passed away into God's graces. She possessed a true warrior spirit throughout her lifetime, she was love and kindness to her core and lived each moment to its fullest, for 72 years.

Helen was born on September 3, 1949, in Monte Vista, CO. When she was 6 months old, she moved to Penasco, NM with her grandmother Sarita F Martinez who raised Helen the remainder of her childhood and teenage years. As a child she loved spending time with her grandma, God-Father Nelson Fresquez and his wife Fritsie Fresquez, picking fruit for pies from her uncles' trees and getting sweets from the local store. Her grandma raised Helen a devout Catholic, she raised her to be strong, independent and educated. From an early age Sarita taught Helen the importance of education by having her read out loud and practice her multiplication problems each night before bed. These are lessons Helen held dear and later taught her children and grandchildren.

After high school Helen enlisted in the US Army with her best friend on a buddy program. She was a proud Vietnam Era Veteran and truly enjoyed her time in the Army. After her time in the Army, she moved to Albuquerque, NM where she attended cosmetology school, after successfully earning her cosmetology license Helen realized this was not something she wanted to do with her life. Around this time Helen met a fellow Vietnam Veteran she married and had 3 children with.

Helen started her career as a Civil Servant with the Department of Defense at Kirtland Air Force Base in the early 80’s and continued working there until she retired after 23 years. Helen always believed in the importance of education and while working full time she earned her Associates Degree in Business in 1991, she earned her Batchlors Degree in Education in 2003 and immediately started working on her master's degree in Education. Most recently Helen worked as a Property Manager in Portland, OR where she was loved by her residents.

Helen believed strongly in giving back to her community and over the years she spent her time volunteering with survivors of domestic violence, foster children, homeless, she taught catechism and was a eucharistic minister for her church over the years.

Helen raised her 3 children and her oldest grandson Xavier as a single mother. To her kids and grandsons Helen was Wonder Women. As a single mom to 3 Helen always had at least 2 jobs, sometimes 3, volunteered in her community and continued her education. Helen was always active in her grandson's lives, never too busy to babysit, pick up from school or sports, spend the weekend at a meet or freeze in the rain for a game, she was known to happily take all her grandsons with her for the weekend, with a smile and was most happy when she was with her children and grandsons.

Helen was preceded in death by her grandmother Sarita F Martinez; sister Betty Martinez; brother Louie Martinez; brother Joe Martinez. She is survived by her son Lawrence Montoya, grandson Solomon Montoya; daughter, daughter Corrina Montoya, grandson Ezekiel Montoya; Grandson/Son Xavier Montoya; Grandson Tristen Montoya and a host of relatives and friends. Helen/Mom/Nana will be dearly missed and forever in our hearts.

Please follow the YouTube link to watch the service live.


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I met Helen through her mother back in the mid 80's. Spent time with the whole family several times. Didn't get to spend enough time with Helen since she moved to Oregon. So sorry for her loss. It was way too soon for her to go. May God keep her safely in his hands. ❤️❤️❤️

Barbara Lovato Cassel Nov 6 2021 1:54 PM