Helen Elmira Berndt, 99, of Valparaiso, passed away Tuesday, February 7, 2023. She was born July 18, 1923, in Michigan City, IN to Walter and Grace (Butler) Coursel. Helen attended Elston High School in Michigan City, and was primarily a homemaker, who later worked at Valparaiso University in the maintenance department for many years. She was a member of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church of Valparaiso, an avid Chicago Cubs fan, and a gifted musician on the harmonica and piano. She was especially fond of her pet African Grey Parrot, Arnie. Helen will be remembered for her great sense of humor and devotion to her family. She will be dearly missed.
On December 19, 1940, in Valparaiso, Helen married Ray A. Berndt, who preceded her in death in 1999. She is survived by sons: Daniel (Cheryl) Berndt of Mishawaka, IN and Thomas (JoAnn) Berndt of Katy, TX; brothers: Wallace (Patricia) Coursel and Alfred (Cookie) Jumche, both of LaPorte, IN; grandchildren: Helen, Grace, Steven, Julie, Stacy, Crystal, and Tyler; 9 great-grandchildren; 5 great-great-grandchildren; and daughter-in-law, Yvonne. She was preceded in death by her father, Walter Coursel; mother and stepfather, Grace & Fred Jumche; sons: Edward (Sharon) and Walter Berndt; daughter, Beverly (Jack) Houser; sisters: Mary Haskins, Bertha Harper, Margaret Lewis, and Marjorie Wood; and brothers: Robert, Albert, and Fred Coursel.
Helen’s family would like to thank the nurses, aides, and staff at Avalon Springs Health Campus, Brickyard, and Dunes Hospice, all of Valparaiso, for the extraordinary care they extended to Helen in her time of need.
Following cremation, a celebration of life will be held at a later date. Memorial donations may be made in Helen’s name to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
So sorry for your loss. Aunt Helen was a terrific person. My mom had such good feelings for Uncle Ray and Aunt Helen. They took everyone in after Grandpa Coursel died and my mom never forgot it. Listening to the two of them singing is a sweet memory I will never forget. Love, Roseann Williamson