Helena was known as a kind, compassionate and incredibly loyal friend, even to her last moments. She lives on through her older brother Ellis, an intimate group of friends and the countless stray cats she benevolently fostered.
In her junior year, Helena entered Ivy Schamis' classroom for Holocaust History. When students were tasked with an essay on whether or not they believed hate could be eradicated from the world, Helena was of the few that said yes.
"Helena truly thought that we could eliminate hate from the world," Shamis said. "She was so optimistic and just a lovely girl."
"The first thing that most people say about his is that she's quiet. That's true to an extent, but she 's not a quiet as people think she is," said Samantha Grady. "She was much more outgoing around friends and secretly a little bit crazy."
Once you got to know her, it was apparent that Helena's quiet demeanor was not to be mistaken for timidness. She has a core set of beliefs and a strong faith that she loved by. Within and beyond her small group of devoted friends, she was never unjust to anyone.
"Even if you were completely crazy, she would accept you, unless you did something to her, then that's a different story," Grady said. "She was the kindest person I've ever met. She never discriminated against anybody."
Helena was the friend to complain to, to rant to and to always lend a helping hand. Whether it be carrying a textbook for a friend or a five-hour phone conversation, Helena never rejected anyone who needed her- no matter what was at stake. Her compassion knew no limits even towards animals.
"There were these two cats that came into our neighborhood, and she would feed them outside," Katherine Dadd said. "One day, she brought them in., and then one of them had a litter. She kept those cats, then one of them had a litter, and then another."
At one point, Helena was caring for almost 13 cats, excluding the few she had bestowed or had run away. Not only was she the compassionate friend, but she was also often times the crazy cat lady."
During her 17 years, Helena never once let go of her beliefs, her compassion or her quirks. While she was unsure of where life would take her, she was always sure of herself.
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*information and quotes provided by the Eagle Eye Newspaper