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Helen M. O’Brien

May 30, 1923 - January 10, 2020

Life Legacy

Our beloved mother, Helen Marie (Reidy) O’Brien passed away peacefully at the age of 96 on January 10, 2020 surrounded by her loving family.

A longtime resident of San Lorenzo, Helen will be remembered for her giving nature and generous heart. Helen had an inner strength combined with a kind and gentle manner.

Preceded in death by her loving husband William, son Patrick and sister Patricia Carlson. Survived by her sister, Mary Cullen McKeown St, Paul MN, children, Teresa, William, John, Kathy, son-in-law Marcelo, loving grandmother to Daniel, Rose, Megan and Juliana and many nieces and nephews.

Helen was born in Little Falls, MN to Hugh and Helen Reidy and grew up in International Falls, MN where her father was Sheriff for almost 20yrs. She shared many wonderful memories of her living in the sheriff’s residence. She attended Falls High School and continued her education graduating in 1945 with a Registered Nursing Degree from St. Josephs Hospital School of Nursing (St. Catherine University) St. Paul, MN. While attending college Helen enrolled in the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps. Immediately after graduation Helen began her career with the V.A. Hospital in Minneapolis, MN then transferring to Denver, CO which is where she would meet her future husband Bill. Both moved to Oakland and were married in 1955 at Our Lady of Lourdes Church making the Bay Area their permanent home.

In 1962 Helen fell in love with the tree lined streets of San Lorenzo Village and resided there for 58 years raising five children and welcoming four grandchildren. Helen returned to Nursing in 1974 as an Occupational Health Nurse at Hunts Cannery and United Can Company, retiring in 1989. Helen had a special love for music playing violin in the high school orchestra and especially loved playing the piano by ear. She loved to read, sit on the swing in the backyard and her favorite television show was the Lawrence Welk Show. She made and kept many friendships through the years however, her greatest joy of all was her family. We will miss her dearly and she will be in our hearts forever.

Helen was a longtime parishioner and devout Catholic at St. John’s Catholic Church in San Lorenzo and a active member of St. Gerard Women’s Club.

Mass wil be held Thursday, January 30th at 10:00 AM at St. John's Church, 264 E Lewelling Blvd, San Lorenzo, CA 94580.  Burial will be held Friday, January 31st at 11:30 AM San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, 32053 McCabe Rd, Santa Nella, CA 95322.

Contact Us

Grissom's Chapel & Mortuary Inc.

267 E. Lewelling Blvd.
San Lorenzo, CA 94580
(510) 278-2800

Grissom's Cremation & Burial Centers

9130-B Alcosta Blvd.
San Ramon, CA 94583
(925) 560-0800

Grissom's Crematory, Inc.

267 E. Lewelling Blvd.
San Lorenzo, CA 94580