Helen Pittenturf

The campus community mourns the passing of Helen Pittenturf, who died on Thursday, March 26, 2020. Helen retired in 1988 from Publications, Print & Mail, after 23 years of service to Bucknell.

Included below is the complete text of the obituary, as provided by the family.

You are encouraged to visit our In Memoriam Site at bucknell.edu/InMemoriam and share personal notes of sympathy and remembrance with others.

On behalf of our entire University community, I extend our deepest sympathies to Helen’s family, as well as to all who knew her at Bucknell.

John C. Bravman

Helen Mary (Markle) Pittenturf, of Mequon, Wisconsin, passed away on March 26, 2020, at the age of 94.

“Mom,” “Grandma,” “Pitt,” was born on April 25, 1925, in Shamokin, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Joseph and Helen (Eisenhart) Markle. Helen was welcomed to Everlasting Life by the love of her life, John Powers Pittenturf, who preceded her in death in 1986.

Helen’s adventure began after graduation from St. Edward High School in 1943, when she worked at Moser’s department store. One day she sold an umbrella to John “Pitt” from Lewisburg, Pa. After a whirlwind three week courtship, they married and bought their first home along the banks of the Susquehanna River in Winfield, Pa. They welcomed their only child, Lynne, and later built a new home in Lewisburg. Helen lived a full and happy life being a wife, mother, homemaker and chief chauffeur for Lynne and her friends. Many described her as a “hoot,” a “character,” “sweet,” or “elegant.” She never met a stranger she didn’t love telling the stories of her life, often embellishing them in great detail!

Helen eventually went to work in the Administration Department of Bucknell University in 1964 and retired in 1988. In 1998 she moved to Mequon, Wisconsin to be close to her daughter and grandchildren. She was happiest when surrounded by family who were her most precious gifts. She called everyone most days and was totally involved with their day to day events. For all birthdays she personally delivered a beautiful gift, flower bouquet, cake and balloons, and of course, always sneaked a dollar or two into their hands in between occasions.

Proud mother of Lynne (Thomas) Lindemann; Adored grandchildren, Amy (Michael) Speich, Rebecca (Scott) Krueger, Thomas (Whitney) Wachs; and cherished great-grandchildren, Olivia Speich, Hannah Speich, Stella Speich, Lilliana Speich, Lauren Krueger, Walter Krueger and Scarlett Wachs. Also survived by her loving nieces, Mary Ann Ruskin, Gloria (Mike) Kalman, Frankie (Robert) Schwartz, Debbie (John) Bamford, Rosalie Devonshire, Cheryl Wall Dormer; and dear nephews, Frank (Donna) Miller and Gary Markle.

In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her sister, Mary Miller; and brother, Joseph Markle.

A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, July 10, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Eighth and St. Louis streets, Lewisburg. Reception to follow at La Primavera Ristorante. Burial will be private in the Forest Hill Cemetery, Union County, Pennsylvania.

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