January 22, 1934 – April 29, 2019
Madonna “Donna” Best Helregel, formerly of Pesotum, Illinois, passed away April 29, 2019 at Oregon Living and Rehab Center, Oregon, IL.
Mass will take place at 10:30 a.m. May 11, 2019, at St. Mary’s Church, 1247 County Road 200 North, Pesotum, Illinois, with Father Robert Lampitt, celebrant. Visitation will be held from 9:00 to 10:30 before mass at the church. Burial will be private. A fellowship luncheon will be hosted by the family immediately after mass at St. Mary’s Parish Hall. In lieu of flowers, the family is accepting mass intentions and memorials to St. Mary’s-St Anne’s Sodality. Arrangements are by Olson Funeral & Cremation Services, Quiram Sycamore Chapel, 1245 Somonauk St., Sycamore, IL.; 815-895-6589. Visit www.olsonfh.com to share a memory or leave a condolence.
Donna was born January 22, 1934, on the family farm in rural Tolono, IL, the oldest of four daughters of Elmer Best and Alfretta Magsamen Best. Donna attended St. Mary’s Grade School and graduated from Villa Grove High School. Donna worked for Illini Electric before marrying Red Helregel of Ste. Marie, IL, on September 27, 1952, at St. Mary’s Church, Pesotum. She later worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture for several years, as well as assisting Red on the family farm. Together, she and Red farmed for over 36 years and raised three children.
Donna enjoyed traveling, gardening, farming, serving on the St. Anne’s Sodality in numerous roles and committees, quilting, baking, and visiting her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She was proud of their accomplishments and often “said a rosary” for them. Her home was admired for her beautiful flowers and landscaping.
Donna is survived by her daughters, Marcy (Don) Billington and Vicki (Stan) Lengerich; her sisters, Janice (Bud) Schultz, JoAnn Schmidt, Cindy (Alan) Bender; six grandchildren, Stacey (David), Paige (Pat), Kevin, Craig, Amanda and Andrea; and three beautiful great-granddaughters, Ella, Charlie, and Olive; and sisters-in-law, Kay Helregel, Caroline Helregel, MaryAnn (Dan) Kuenstler, and Theresa Radke.
She was preceded in death by her son, Neil; an older infant brother, Francis; and 10 brothers- and sisters-in-law; and most recently her beloved husband, Red, of 66 years, deceased March 4, 2019.