We are saying goodbye to and celebrating the life of Helen Clemons who passed away on Wednesday, January 13, 2019, at the age of 91, in San Antonio.
Helen was born on May 3, 1927 to O.G. and Edna (Self) Patterson in Hale Center.
She is survived by her daughter, Deana Steinle and husband Al, two grandchildren Marci Steinle and husband Tim, and Dusty Steinle and wife Valerie, and two great grandchildren Aiden and Owen Steinle.
Helen was predeceased by her beloved husband Dean, who died May 27, 2008. Also by her parents, O. G. Patterson and Mother, Edna Self Patterson, and sister, Joy Della Conner.
Helen and Dean were married when they were 16 and 18 respectively on November 3, 1943. Living in Gatesville, near Fort Hood Army Base, obtaining housing in that year was difficult. Helen often mentioned that they moved 27 times in the first year of their marriage. The housing was often sharing homes with 2 or 3 other couples or families. Fortunately they had very few belongings.
Dean was a welder and built a business in Gatesville. During the 40’s they enjoyed the hobby of riding motorcycles with a local group of couples who called themselves “The Roadrunners”. Keep in mind that they were riding double on a big Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Good thing they were small in stature. They rode every weekend. In 1948, Helen and Dean saved their money and rode to California and back. There were a lot of great stories about that trip.
In the latter part of 1948, they were able to purchase their first house. Deana was born in 1949.
In 1955, Helen and Dean moved to Austin. Being a devoted Mother to her only child, Deana. She was active in PTA, leading Brownie troops and later in the Band Boosters of the Austin High School, Austin.
While Deana was a child, Helen made sure that she was involved in many activities, including ballet, baton twirling, swimming and water skiing.
During the next stage of their lives in the 60’s, Helen and Dean loved to be on the water in their ski boat. While living close to Lake Austin, they entertained many friends and family.
After Deana married Al Steinle in 1969, Helen and Dean began the next stage of their lives and started a business buying and selling antiques, which was a very special love of theirs. Dean phased out his welding business in Austin and in 1971, they moved to Salado, a quaint little town, that was a tourist magnet due to all of the history and their various types of stores including antique stores. They purchased a beautiful two story traditional house in Salado next to Interstate 35, which was listed in The State of Texas Historical Society Records and was over 100 years old. They began to restore it to reflect the period of time in which it was built. It was known as “The Olde Fowler House”. They furnished their home with antiques that were common to homes during the late 1870’s through early 1900 period. This home was very special to them. They added a barn in the back acre of the property which became the store in which they displayed the Primative and Early American Antiques. In order to maintain this business and clients, it was necessary for them to travel to the New England and Midwestern areas of The United States. These were the best years of their lives. They were just poor kids from a little town who were now able to travel and see some of the most amazing places while doing what they loved, looking for antiques to stock their store. They had a very successful business and Helen had an outstanding natural ability for decorating. She helped many of their clients to decorate their homes and offices.
In the late 80’s they were unable to continue their business and go on the necessary business trips due to Helen’s aging parents. They kept in touch with the many friends they had met through their business and regularly attended various antique shows in Texas.
The next phase of their lives began when they moved to Pleasanton in 2005. They wanted to be closer to Deana in their later years of life. Dean passed away in 2008 and Helen had to make many changes in her life without her best friend and husband. This was a very difficult time for her. She moved to Argent Court in 2015, where she has resided in her beautifully furnished apartment surrounded by her favorite pieces of furniture and antique decorations. She did not want to live anywhere she could not have her lovely antiques.
We will miss her but know that she is back with the love of her life.
The pallbearers were Al Steinle, Dusty Steinle, Aiden Steinle, Kevin Steinle, Jim Andrus, and Jack Jordan. Honorary pallbearers are Glenn (Sandy) Steinle, Jr., Don Steinle, Tom Joseph and T.L. (Tommy) Hairston.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Safer Path Family Violence Shelter, P.O Box 688, Pleasanton 78064, or the charity of your choice.