Longtime Southern Humboldt resident Helen Stowe passed away at the age of 85 on August 18, 2013, at Garberville’s Jerold Phelps Community Hospital with friends and family by her side.
In 1971 Helen settled in Humboldt County with her husband Murray Stowe. Together they were proprietors of The Country Store in Ruby Valley from 1971 to 1978. After two years in Roseburg, Oregon, Helen and Murray returned to the Garberville area in 1980, where she worked as bookkeeper for the Benbow Inn for 15 years.
Born Helen Lorraine Miller on December 19, 1927, to farmer John J. Miller and his wife Cora Alma (Morehead) in Maquoketa, Iowa. Helen was the youngest of seven children. When both her parents died while she was a young girl, older brother Carlyle and his wife, Vivian, took her in to their home.
After high school she married fellow Maquoketan Robert ("Bob") Grant. Together they had two children: a daughter, Dawn, born in 1950 and a son, Scott, in 1954.
Leaving Iowa, they settled first in southern California and then in 1961 moved to Cave Junction, Oregon, where they owned and operated the local weekly newspaper, The Illinois Valley News. Bob and Helen were divorced in 1963 but remained on friendly terms while both were living.
After divorcing, Helen returned to southern California. In 1965 she married family friend, Murray Stowe, a widower, and became a loving stepmother to his son, Forrest, from his previous marriage.
In 2007 Helen enjoyed attending the Miller family reunion in Maquoketa, visiting with many nieces, nephews, and cherished friends. At home she enjoyed crafting, word games and crossword puzzles, tending her African violets and geraniums, and was an avid reader.
Helen is survived by son, Scott Grant; stepson, Forrest Stowe; grandson, Evan Champie; granddaughter, Sara Champie; son-in-law, Bruce Champie and his wife, Ascha Karen Champie; and by her beloved cat, Luther.
She was preceded in death by siblings Mryl, Dorothea, Clifford, Carlyle, Judd, and Bud; by ex-husband Bob Grant; husband Murray Stowe; and by her daughter, Dawn Grant Champie. She will be remembered lovingly by other friends and family too numerous to name.