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Helen Jean Rogness

Posted by timb@millerfh.com

Helen peacefully passed away on June 27, 2021at Sierra Winds in Peoria, AZ. Born June 26th, 1935 to Fred and Emma (Schacher) Kessler on the family farmer near Anamoose, ND. She was the youngest of 10 children. On March 7th, 1959 she was united in marriage to Chuck Rogness at First Baptist Church in Bismarck, ND.
She graduated from McClusky High School. She attended college at Gateway Community College in Phoenix, AZ and Mt. San Jacinto in San Jacinto, CA.
Helen was an active member of her church in Sun City, AZ, a Stephen minister and on the board of Wednesday Night Alive. She was also active in her church in Sioux Falls, SD helping in different roles. She was a stay at home mother until her own children were old enough to take care of themselves at which time she began to take in foster babies. She loved children and became a foster mother to 54 foster babies. She loved them as her own. It was not uncommon to have not one in the house, but sometimes two. Also, it was not uncommon for Todd and Thomy Jo to pitch in and change a diaper or feed a bottle. After her foster journey she worked at Sioux Valley, now Sanford hospital, in the developmental Center.
Unfortunately, Helen had a constant battle with her health. In 2002 she had surgery for pancreatic cancer and in 2007 she had breast cancer removed. However, God was good to her letting her live until her 86th birthday. She praised him every day.
She is loved and survived by her husband Chuck, daughter Thomy Jo (Bill) O’Connor, son Todd Rogness, granddaughter Regan O’Connor all of Sioux Falls. Grandson Pierce (Concepta) O’Connor, NJ, and three great grandsons, William, Milo, and Harlan, NJ and special friend and former foster baby, Deborah Levin, CA. She is preceded in death by 4 brothers, 5 sisters, her grandson Justin Wehde, and a daughter Katie (Andy) Langenfeld. Helen was very close with many of her nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to American Lutheran Church, Sun City, AZ, Sierra Winds Foundation, Peoria.AZ and Lutheran Social Services, Sioux Falls, SD.
A Celebration of life will be held September 3, 2021 at 10:30am at American Lutheran Church in Sun City, AZ located at 17200 N. Del Webb Blvd, Sun City, AZ 85373. A luncheon will be held after internment.