SOUTH RANGE - Helen L. Savola, 95, of South Range, died on Sunday, October 21, 2012, at Portage Pointe Pewabic House.
She was born in Mohawk, Mich., on April 29, 1917, a daughter of the late Jacob and Katherine (Oikarinen) Kinnunen. She attended school in Mohawk and Elm River and graduated from the Painesdale High School in 1935.
On July 8, 1939, she was married to Oliver "Waco" Savola in Calumet. He preceded her in death in 1988.
Helen and her husband, Waco, owned and operated Savola Clothing Store in South Range from 1957 to 1961. In 1962, they opened the Magic Maid Laundromat in South Range and the business was in operation until it closed in 1996 due to a fire.
Helen served as the treasurer for the Village of South Range from 1990 until March 2000.
Helen was a member of Grace Lutheran Church of South Range, the South Range Historical Society, was a charter and life member of Range Post 6165 VFW Ladies Auxiliary, was a charter member of the Range Snowmobile Club where she served as treasurer for 14 years and was also a member of the former Range Business Association.
Helen was a voracious reader. The last book she read was "50 Shades of Grey" in large print. She was an active volunteer in the Range Town and was a very proud Democrat. In the late 1980s, she was selected "Mrs. Democrat" by the Democrat Party.
Surviving are a daughter, Sandra Kaye of Houghton; two sons, Tom (Patty) Savola of Painesdale and John (JoAnn) Liinanki of Highland, Mich.; seven grandchildren, Lynnda Bowden, Valerie (Michael) Jupe, Michele (Steve) Harma, Lauri Sue (Steve) Kneebone, Thomas Marc Savola, Justine Stone and Rob Stone; five great-grandchildren, Kimberly, Jade, Casey, Sethany, Paige and Allison; one great-great-granddaughter, Ava Lynn; one brother, Urban (Dorothy) Kinnunen of Berkley, Mich.; a sister-in-law, Patsy (Sanfred) Mattila of South Range; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Besides her parents and husband, Helen was also preceded in death by a grandson, Donald Bowden; a son-in-law, James Bowden; three brothers, Charles Kinnunen, Lauri Kinnunen and Bill Kinnunen; and a sister, Clara Okkonen.
Helen's family would like to thank Portage Home Health, especially Sara Adams, Dr. William Anderson and the staff at Pewabic House at PortagePointe for the wonderful care and kindness she received.
A memorial service will be held at noon on Saturday, October 27, 2012, in the Mountain View Mortuary in South Range, with Pastor Bucky Beach and Helen's nephew, Pastor Paul Raappana to officiate. Visitation will be from 10:30 a.m. until the time of service on Saturday at the mortuary.
The VFW Ladies Auxiliary will conduct a memorial service prior to the start of the service. Interment will be in the Mountain View Cemetery in South Range. Memorials may be made to the charity of one's choice in the name of Helen L. Savola.
Arrangements are being handled by the Jukuri-Antila Funeral Home in Hancock, Antila Funeral Services, Inc. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at antilafuneral.com.