Helen Christine (Pack) Manning, loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister and friend left this world to be with her heavenly father on April 21, 2021 at the age of 98.
Helen was born June 3, 1922 in Warner, OK. She was the fourth of six children born to Henry and Ella Pack. When Helen was seven years old, she moved with her family from Oklahoma to Rochester. While living in Rochester, Helen met the love of her life in 1938 and married George Orval Manning on Feb. 20, 1939. Orval and Helen started their home on a farm between O’Brien and Knox City in the Needmore community. This is where they called home for 51 years until 1990 when Orval retired from farming and they moved to Knox City. On this farm they welcomed their only child, a son Royce Lavelle Manning in 1940.
The farming community of Needmore is where they made lifelong friends. Helen’s work consisted of maintaining a home for her husband and son, and she stayed very busy helping with chores on the farm, raising a garden and keeping her yard beautiful. Some of the most memorable times with Helen were shelling peas on the front porch, making homemade ice cream with a hand crank and raising chicks to the age of becoming the perfect frying hens (which she did). You knew the hens were ready when she brought out the yellow raincoat. Helen was the ultimate farmers wife, working tirelessly from sunup to sundown with her husband and son. This created lifelong wonderful memories for her family.
While Helen was a hard-working housewife, she also loved serving at her church. As a child, Helen was a member of the Foursquare Church. After marriage, Helen became a member with her husband of the First Baptist Church of O’Brien for about 70 years where she served teaching children in Sunday School and feeding many people for funerals, church socials and Vacation Bible School. Helen’s commitment to her church was very strong. She and Orval drove nearly 250,000 miles back and forth from their family farm to church over the years.
Helen was preceded in death by her parents; husband Orval of 68 years; three sisters Starlie Parr, Clara Allred and Mamie Welch; two brothers Jim Pack and Darrell Mac Pack.
Helen is survived by her only son Royce Manning and wife Peggy of Abilene; grandson Bradley Manning of Hudson Oaks; two great-grandsons Jacob Manning and wife Kate of Austin and Samuel Manning of North Richland Hills; and also survived by many nieces, nephews and a host of wonderful friends.
A graveside service celebrating the life of Helen Manning was held Saturday, April 24, 2021 at Knox City Cemetery. Services were under the direction of Smith Family Funeral Homes.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to O’Brien Baptist Church, 902 Grand Central, O’Brien, TX 79539.
Online condolences can be shared with the family at www.smithfamilyfh.com.