Jim Helten, 69, West Fargo, ND, died on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, at Sanford Health on Broadway in Fargo.
Jim Helten, 69, West Fargo, ND, died on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, at Sanford Health on Broadway in Fargo. Funeral Mass will be on Sunday, Nov. 4 at 2 p.m. at Holy Cross Catholic Church, West Fargo beginning with the Rosary and followed by tributes and reception. Burial will be in the Calvary Cemetery, Grand Forks. James Alfred Helten was born June 8, 1949, in Devils Lake, ND, the son of Raymond and Agatha (Tholkes) Helten. He graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Devils Lake in 1967. Ten days after graduating, he was paralyzed as a result of a motorcycle accident. Jim went on to the University of North Dakota where he received his BA, Master’s and PhD in English. His dissertation was on John Beecher a social protest poet. Jim married Susan Keogh on June 24, 1976, in Grand Forks, ND. He taught at Lake Region Jr. College in Devils Lake and UND. He administered the disabled student services program and was instrumental in establishing the accessibility on campus and wheel chair sports programs. Jim and Sue moved to Alabama where he taught at Auburn University. They later moved to Fayetteville, NC, where Jim taught at Fayetteville State University. After 25 years in the south, they returned north to West Fargo to be closer to family. Jim loved to read and collect books and cherished time with his nieces and nephews. He led an adventuresome lifestyle and didn’t let his handicap define his limits. He participated in wheel chair basketball for many years. Jim is survived by; his wife, Susan; brother, Bob Helten; sisters, Mary Sue (Allen) Griggs, Judy (Dick) Niebauer, Patty (Dan) Frison and Karen (Paul) Gebhard; brothers-in-law, Ray (Kumsun) Keogh, Mark (Cheryl) Keogh, Bobby (Dianna) Keogh and Ron Keogh; sisters-in-law, Donna (David) Hansen, Patty Hughes, Joni (Delano) Kurtz; and many beloved nieces and nephews and great-nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by; his parents; sister-in-law, Joan Helten; brothers-in-law, Tom (Nancy) Keogh, Dan Keogh and Frank Hughes. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to HERO of Fargo which redistributes medical supplies and equipment nationally and internationally. West Funeral Home & Life Tribute Center, www.westfuneralhome.com.