Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Daniel Helt

Daniel Helt

Daniel Helt

Daniel Ernest Helt passed away peacefully on May 20, 2020, after a courageous battle with brain cancer.

He was born in Colfax, Washington on February 13, 1944, to Ernest and Helen Mae (Weitz) Helt. Dan was a graduate of Endicott High School in 1962 and received a Bachelor's Degree in Education from Eastern Washington University in 1966.

Dan served his country in the Army during the Vietnam era for two years in Berlin as the commander's jeep driver. He was excited when Bob Hope came to Berlin to entertain the troops. To our surprise, when the cameras scanned the servicemen in the audience, there was Dan! Upon returning from military service, Dan began his career at Fisher Junior High in the Cheney School District until retirement.

He coached basketball, taught drivers ed., and took students to Mt. Spokane for Friday Night Skiing. In addition to teaching, Dan was able to continue his love of farming and was able to spend his weekends and summers running the family farm, after the death of his father. Dan loved spending time at Priest Lake every summer. Huckleberry picking, boating/skiing and enjoying time with the Weitz family was a time he cherished.

He was extremely creative! His greatest joy was creating an outdoor "elaborate Christmas display", all hand made with thousands of lights attached to miles of rebar for the community and others to enjoy. Quite a sight to behold! We couldn't wait to see what he had in store for the following year! Dan dabbled in stain glass and always had a camera in his hand. Every Christmas we looked forward to Dan's "Family Calendar", always a surprise! Dan could fix anything, inside or out!! He enjoyed watching Gonzaga basketball, WSU football, and trips to Seattle for a Mariners game.

His faith was important and was active in Trinity Lutheran Church, serving on the church council. Dan will be remembered for a host of accomplishments in his life, but most admirable was his devotion and care for his father and compassion and love shown to his mother.

Dan is survived by his mother, Helen Mae (Weitz) Helt; sister, Jane Helt Veter (Dennis); nephew, Matt Veter; sister, Susie Helt Heglar (Paul); niece, Allison Sherwood (Rick) and Rip; nephew, Jon Heglar; and Ava and Owen Heglar. Special thanks to Dick and Bill Kaiser for the help they have given throughout the years and neighbors, Dan and Carol Larson.

Our family would like to give special thanks to Dr. Gary Candelaria and Faith, with Whitman Medical Group, for the wonderful care and compassion they showed to Dan and our family. In addition, we would like to thank Cancer Care Northwest, Dr. Wayne Lamoreaux and Dr. Saritha Thumma. Sincere thanks to Susan Hunt and Whitman Hospital, Janet Sandefur and staff at City View, The Courtyard, Whitman Health & Rehab and Pastor Jeanette Solimine.

Dan was preceded in death by his father, Ernest Helt; uncle Dr. Claude Weitz; and aunt, Jean Kaiser. Dan will be dearly missed by his family and friends. Donations may be made in his name to Trinity Lutheran Church, The Endicott Cemetery or the charity of your choice.

A private graveside service will be held on May 28, at 11:00 am. Pastor Ian McMichael will be officiating.

Bruning Funeral Home of Colfax, Washington, has been entrusted with arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to http://www.bruningfuneralhome.com.


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