Claremore-Area Murder Victim Remembered For Kindness
ROGERS COUNTY, Oklahoma - The family of Helen Pasdach wants her remembered, not as a murder victim, but as a caring mother and grandmother. Now that Helen's killer is behind bars for life, they feel they can finally begin to heal and remember the good times.
Helen Pasdach was sitting in her recliner in her home in Rogers County when Chance Barrett walked in, looking for what he could steal. She said to him, "what are you doing in my house? Get out. I'm going to call the police."
He shot her, then, he shot her again. She was 74. We've reported on her death several times, but this report is about her life.
Helen was one of 11 kids and grew up in Western Oklahoma. She got married and had three children. When the kids were little, she devoted herself to being a full-time wife and mother, being a Girl Scout leader, teaching Sunday school classes, making huge homemade meals and sewing.
"She made all my clothes until the fourth grade. We always knew she'd be there when we got off the bus," said her daughter Jill Goodson.
After the kids got into school, Helen worked for Oklahoma Child Welfare and later, the Indian hospital. In a world where people are quick to criticize others, Helen was known for never uttering an unkind word or gossiping - and didn't tolerate it around her either.
Her best friend Judy Hill said: “She always had good thoughts about everybody."
And, her cousin Althea Statum remembers, "She was caring, loving and I seldom saw her sad."
They all have wonderful memories of spending time with Helen and her willingness to take care of someone, day or night, without complaint. It makes it that much harder for them to accept her being killed in such a cruel, callous way.
"She would've gladly fixed him a sandwich and given him anything he wanted, but she wasn't given that choice," said Jill.
Now that the court proceedings are behind them, Helen's family and friends say they will focus on all the good she did and try to live by her example of always looking for the best in others.