Helen Zitek Dailey, 95, died Thursday, March 8, 2018, at Avera Flandreau Hospital.
Funeral services are at 10:30 a.m. Monday at Ss. Simon and Jude Catholic Church in Flandreau, with burial in the church cemetery. Visitation is 4 – 6 p.m. Sunday with a prayer service at 6 p.m. at Skroch Funeral Chapel in Flandreau.
Helen was born in New York City, Feb. 20, 1923, to Frank and Antonie (Svec) Zitek. She graduated from Julia Richman High School in June 1940.
Helen worked at a hat factory (which she hated) and Brewster’s Aeronautical Corp in Long Island City, New York. She then followed in her two brothers footsteps and joined the United States Navy in May of 1944.
Helen met Kenny at the NATTC (Naval Air Technology Training Center) in Norman, Oklahoma, where they were both stationed. They were married in the naval chapel in Norman on Sept. 14, 1945. Following their discharge from the Navy, Kenny brought Helen home to South Dakota, where she got her first real look at a working farm.
Helen embraced the life of a farmer’s wife and was soon driving tractors and having babies. After all the kids were in school, Helen began her long career as a bookkeeper. Her first job was at Feckers Hatchery in Pipestone and then 28 years at Duncan Elevator & Trucking Services. She retired at the age of 74. Following Kenny’s death in 2000, Helen remained on the family farm and enjoyed many more years of gardening and bird watching.
Helen took great pride and joy in her home and knew many people enjoyed driving by the Dailey Farm to see the lush lawn, unique flowers and plants. In November 2015, Helen moved to Flandreau and joined the community of Edgewood Vista.
Although first reluctant, she quickly became a favorite with her Bohemian sense of humor and her ability to make everyone around her feel just a little better. Helen was a member of Ss. Simon and Jude Catholic Church, Altar Society, Catholic Daughters and Flandreau American Legion.
Helen is survived by sons, Will of Flandreau, Dean (Marci) of Pipestone, Minnesota, Kevin of Brandon, Frank (Lori) of Blaine, Minnesota, Tobin (Tina) of Flandreau and Brian of Pipestone, Minnesota; daughter, Colleen Dailey Kuechle of Crystal, Minnesota; daughter-in-law Sharon Wilts Dailey of Flandreau; 21 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren and many cherished friends including the entire Edgewood Vista staff and residents.
Helen was preceded in death by her husband Kenny, beloved son Steve PV Dailey; two brothers, a sister and many family and friends.
For online condolences, visit www.skrochfc.com.