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Helen's Story

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Helen L. Hartranft Reyff Cripe, 95, Goshen, died Thursday, Jan. 11, at her home.
Helen was born to Florence and Thomas Hartranft on May 16, 1922, in Elkhart. She graduated from Elkhart High School in June 1940. She was immediately employed by Dr. L.F. Swihart as a doctor's assistant. She worked there until World War II started.
She was married to Frederick J. Reyff, who was drafted into the U.S. Navy. Helen left her work to join her husband and was hired by civil service at the United States Naval Powder Factory in Indian Head, Maryland, as a clerk stenographer. Before the war ended they were both transferred to the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in Washington D.C. When the war ended, they returned to Elkhart.
She moved to Goshen in 1959. On June 23, 1973, she married Galen J. Cripe. They had a wonderful marriage of 33 years.
She was preceded in death by her parents; both husbands, Frederick J. Reyff and Galen J. Cripe; a brother, Jack Hartranft and a sister, Mary Jane Yoder.
Survivors include a son, Thomas J. (Cheryl) Reyff, Middlebury; a daughter, Dianne Reyff (John) Andreula, Old Bridge, New Jersey; four grandchildren, Michelle (David) Vasquez, Madison, Wisconsin, Erica (Tom) Parry, Mt. Clair, New Jersey, Jason T. Deel, Alexandra, Virginia, and Camden (Kim) Forbes, Middlebury; three great-grandchildren; two stepdaughters, Debbie Ott and Rita Phillips; two stepsons, Jerry Lee Cripe and Jeff Cripe; and numerous stepgrandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Helen worked 18 years for CTS Corporation, Elkhart. After she and Galen retired, they spent 31 wonderful winters in Sebring, Florida. She played the organ, decorated many cakes, macramaed lawn chairs and painted on shirts, all for family and friends. She furnished entertainment for coffee hours and park dinners and led a kitchen band for many years.
She was a member of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship Church. She was a lifetime member of the Eastern Star.
There will be no visitation. She will be cremated and a graveside service will be held at a later date with Rev. Terry Miller officiating.
Yoder-Culp Funeral Home is assisting with arrangements.
Online condolences may be shared at www.yoderculpfuneralhome.com.
Published on January 14, 2018
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