Cover photo for Helen T. Yarnell's Obituary
Helen T. Yarnell Profile Photo
1918 Helen 2014

Helen T. Yarnell

March 10, 1918 — June 2, 2014

Helen Theola Grove Yarnell, 96 of 576 Keely Rd. Franklin continued her journey to be in the presence of her Lord on June 2, 2014 at UPMC Northwest following a time of declining health. She passed away peacefully after visits with many family and friends.

Born March 10, 1918 in Shreve, Ohio, she was the daughter of the late Grace Miller Grove and Archie Grove.

Helen graduated from Oil City High School in 1937.

She was a member of the Evangelical United Brethren in Oil City and the Christ United Methodist Church in Franklin.

She worked as switchboard operator before and during WWII and for several years at Cribbs store in Oil City. She was a joyful homemaker whose bounteous table was legendary among friends, family and guests.

Helen married Kenneth H. Yarnell who survives in 1940. Helen and Ken were introduced by dear friends Mary Voight Francisco and Lee Francisco who kindled a romance and lifelong partnership that lasted more than 74 years.

Helen was a lifelong learner whose love of God, nature, family, books, homegrown foods, and nutritious cooking influenced all who met her. She taught several generations the value of fresh grown and lovingly prepared foods.

Among the numerous new skills she acquired over the years were; learning to drive a car and swim in her 30's, returning to a rural lifestyle in her 40's and learning to ride her own horse and to conduct epic canning activities in her 50's she learned to use the computer. She was a lover of birds and of all God's beautiful world, she took particular delight in playing with children, keeping track of her growing family, baking pies, gardening and in caring for her numerous dog and cat friends over the years. She also took great joy in fishing with her husband and grandchildren. .

Helen believed in serving her community and participated in service until her 80's when declining health became an issue. She was a breast cancer survivor and served for many decades as a community outreach worker for the cancer society. She was a volunteer leader for youth fellowship, Cub and Boy Scouts, Brownie and Girl Scouts and led overnight camping excursions. She served as a Sunday school teacher for over 60 years and participated in the church choir.
Helen had a great love of music and encouraged the learning of music in others. She served in various offices of the local AARP including a term as president. She had volunteered for many years with Meals-On-Wheels.

Surviving are her husband, Kenneth Yarnell; a daughter Cheryl Anderton and her husband Paul; a son Darrell Yarnell and his wife Bonnie; 6 grandchildren Beth Cochran and her partner Jim Grazica, Dena Balbach and her husband Lenny, Darrell Yarnell Jr. and his wife Kellie, Andrew Yarnell and his wife Jennifer, Andrew Anderton and Evan Anderton and his wife Laura; 17 great-grandchildren Bekki Lee Beighley and husband Arthur, Jessica Helen Mair and husband Kevin, Megan Marie Cochran, Sarah J. Cochran, Mandy, Michael, Paul and Phillip Sharp, Dustin Williamson Sr., Megan Williamson, Michele Apple, Eric, Melissa and Melinni Balbach, Sophie and Mason Anderton and Afton Yarnell; 9 great-great-grandchildren Benton and Dylan Beighly, Mark Christopher and Abagail Lynn Cunningham, Kadence Marie Merkel, Michael Sharp Jr., Dustin Williamson Jr., Andrea Apple and Tayven Thomas. Also surviving are a brother Vern Grove of Washington, two sisters-in-law and spirit Norma Woods and her husband Curt and Beatrice Turner along with numerous nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents and beloved mother and father-in-law Goldie Marie Mealy Yarnell and Phillip Yarnell, she was preceded in death by the following much loved family members: two sisters Genevieve Grove Hondel and Lois White, two brothers John and Darrell Grove, her granddaughter Denise Yarnell Sharp and a niece Ann Jones.

Friends will be received in the Huff Funeral Home & Cremation Services Inc., 312 W. Park St from 1-3 p.m. Thursday.

Funeral services will be held at 3:15 p.m. Thursday at Christ United Methodist Church, 1135 Buffalo St. with associate pastor Rev. Sam Wagner, officiating.

Interment will follow in the Franklin Cemetery.

The family is grateful for and wishes to acknowledge the extraordinary caregivers Cindy Carone, Marty Wagner and Lisa who have become as family to us.

Memorial donations may be made to the Venango County Humane Society, P.O.Box 1045, Oil City PA 16301.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Helen T. Yarnell, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, June 5, 2014

1:00 - 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

Huff - Guthrie Funeral Home & Cremation Services Inc.

312 West Park St., Franklin, PA 16323

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Starts at 3:15 pm (Eastern time)

Christ United Methodist Church

1135 Buffalo Street, Franklin, PA 00000

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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