Helen Connors

Obituary of Helen Jean Ruhaak Connors

Helen Jean Ruhaak Connors was granted her eternal leave December 15, 2023.


She was born in Peoria, IL on April 19, 1933, the daughter of the late George James and Mary Bulger Ruhaak. She attended St. Joseph's Grade School and Manual Training High School in Peoria, IL.


Mrs. Connors was a graduate of Western Illinois University and a member of Sigma Kappa sorority. She taught first grade in Peoria, IL before raising her family. She moved to Hilton Head Island, SC in 1994, having lived in Peoria, LaGrange Park, and Urbana, IL; Arlington and Leesburg, VA; and Fort Wayne, IN. She was a member of St. Francis by the Sea Catholic Church and volunteered many hours at long-term care facilities, nursing homes and thrift shops over the years. Her faith, her family, and her friends were her life. She took great pride in the accomplishments of her children and grandchildren. She loved babies, doing crosswords, Notre Dame football, dining out, and spending time with family and friends.


She is survived by her four sons: James (Beth) of Louisville, KY; Kevin of Hilton Head Island, SC; J. Michael (Angela) of Nashville, TN; and Timothy (Wendy) of Nashville,

TN; two daughters: Cathryn (Ray) Albrecht of Heath, TX, Maureen (David) Fraser of Collierville, TN; twenty-eight grandchildren: Elizabeth (Chris) Sanders, Melissa Asher (Colin Van Dyke), David (Addie) and Michelle Asher; Joshua (Elizabeth), Joseph (Kara), Zachary, Allison, Jacob, and Molly Connors; Michael (Mary Beth) Albrecht, Jennifer (Sam) Holloway, Kelli (Kenny) Moore, and Ryan Albrecht; Erin (Marc) Berrange, Patrick (Amanda), Mimi and Robert Connors; Brittany, Andrew, and Abigail Fraser; Sarah, John Murray IV (Clare), Charles and Mary Helen Connors; Emma, Grace, and Gretchen Connors; thirteen great grandchildren: Benjamin and Margot Albrecht; Faith, Theodore and Franklin Moore; Henry and Norah Asher; Oliver Connors; Vincent and Mackenzie Holloway; Harper Berrange; Catherine Sanders; Jack Van Dyke, and many nieces and nephews.


She was preceded in death by her husband of 64 years, John Murray Connors,

her son, John Murray Connors III, and her daughter, Margaret Mary “Marti” Asher; three brothers: William, Robert and George Ruhaak; five sisters: Dorothy (Ray) Troy, Eileen (George) Mahrt, Lorraine, Genevieve and Mary Ruhaak; her nephews: Gary, Paul, Mark and Patrick Ruhaak; and great nieces: Renee Mahrt and Amy Ruhaak.


Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Saint Francis by the Sea Catholic Church in Hilton Head Island on Friday, January 12, 2024, 10:00 am local time. Inurnment will be in “her waterfront property” at the St. Francis Columbarium. The Island Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements, islandfuneralhome.com.


In lieu of flowers, brighten someone’s day with an act of kindness, put a smile on a child’s face with a donation to Smile Train, 633 Third Avenue, 9th floor, New York, NY 10017; help save a baby’s life with a donation to the Crisis Pregnancy Center, 2 Cardinal Drive, Hilton Head, SC  29926; or make a donation to the Margaret Connors Asher Scholarship Fund at Alamance Community College Foundation https://givebutter.com/embed/c/ACCF-01.


Mass of Christian Burial

10:00 am
Friday, January 12, 2024
St. Francis by the Sea Catholic Church
45 Beach City Road
Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, United States
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