Helen B. Morrison

May 14, 1914 - September 29, 2012

05/14/1914 - 09/29/2012

Morrison, Helen Barry, 97, died Saturday, September 29, 2012 at Wheeling Hospital.
A resident of St. Clairsville for many years, Helen was born May 14, 1915 in Fairmont, WV, the daughter of the late Charles D. and Anna Taylor Barry. She was a graduate of Fairmont College and received her Masters Degree in Biology from St. Mary’s College in Winona, MN. She taught in Tazwell, VA before moving to Belmont County, where from 1967-80 she taught at St. Clairsville High School.
During her lifetime, Helen- or Bridget as she preferred to be called- was active in community service: the Girl Scouts, the Adult Literacy Program, Sunday School Teacher, volunteer at the St. Clairsville Council of Churches Food Pantry, and library volunteer including the Books to Nursing Homes Program. She was a library aide working as a reading instructor in an adult literacy program and a Wheeling Hospital aide. She was a member of the Belmont County Retired Teachers and Ohio Retired Teachers Associations.
An avid traveler, she visited much of the world including fifty countries and seven continents. It was a lifetime interest.
Since moving to Wheeling in 2005 and living at Elmhurst, she has been a member of St. Michael Parish.
In addition to her parents, Bridget was preceded in death by her husband James Michael Morrison 1971, a son James Michael Morrison Jr. 1980, and a sister and brother in 1927. Her other sister, Anne Barry of Wheeling, died in 1984 and a brother, Charles D. Barry Jr. of Omaha, Nebraska, in 2007. A grandson, Paul Francis Volpe, died in 2002. Living relatives include daughters Mrs. Catherine Louis Volpe of Wheeling and Reverend Marian Rectenwald of Tracy City, TN; a son, Charles Barry Morrison of Poland, IN; and six grandchildren: Genevieve Volpe, Dr. Gretchen Christopher Lawson, Dr. Emily Kevin Sylvester, Catherine Michael Jacko, Michael Miranda Rectenwald, Sarah Jon Stewart, and two great-grandchildren, Ryan and Gavin.
Visitation will occur at 9:30 a.m. at St. Michael’s Church prior to the celebration of the liturgy at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, October 8.
Interment will follow at the Holy Cross Cemetery, Fairmont, WV.
Online condolences may be expressed to the family at altmeyer.com

16 Condolences
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William M. Yavelak
7 years ago

“Steadfast, energetic, totally devoted to her profession and her students”-Helen’s genuineness made her a joy to work with as well as unforgettable.

Derry Dunsmore
7 years ago

A wonderful friend for 36 years, Helen was truly an inspiration through St. C. High School teaching days and wonderful times at Seneca Lake, the Poconos and yearly visits when moving away from the area made it harder to see one another. Helen, our 3-4-5-6 club which became our 6-7-8-9 club will miss you and live in our memories of deeply personal talks and lively penny ante poker games. We love you, Helen!

Paula Reese
7 years ago

As a former colleague at St. Clairsville High School, I am saddened by Helen’s passing but gladdened by memories of such special times we all shared especially in the teachers’ lounge and on our “teacher field trips.” Her intelligence and adventuresome spirit were inspiring. Deepest sympathy to her beloved family.

Rich and Mary Lynn Jacko
7 years ago

Catherine, Lou, and all the family,

What a wonderful life to celebrate! We enjoyed reading about your Mom/Grandma’s life and accomplishments. We are keeping all of you in our prayers.

Love, Rich and Mary Lynn

Moragh Orr Montoya
7 years ago

Dear Catherine,

My father told me last night about your mother’s death. Please know you have my thoughts, prayers, and sympathy. In my experience, you never have your mother long enough, no matter what age she reaches, and you never stop missing her, though the very, very painful time does eventually pass. My love to you, Lou, your children, and all your family,


Kaye Sechrest
7 years ago

God bless you, Mrs. Morrison! You were a wonderful teacher, but more than that, a wonderful human being.

Joanne C. Hess
7 years ago

Helen and I are part of a long time friendship of four teachers at ST.C HS . We spent many years getting together for cards and laughter . We spent several summers out at Seneca Lake enjoying each others company. I will always remember the laughter and our wonderful times together. I know she is at peace now and free of pain.

Margot Holmquist
7 years ago

Jim and I send our thoughts and prayers to Helen’s loving and beloved family. As one of her many devoted friends, I have loved Helen for 37 years and was fortunate enough to know that my love was returned. Happy are our memories of Helen Bridget Barry Morrison –never to be forgotten and now at peace with her loving Lord.

Michael Munas
7 years ago

Mrs. Morrison was a wise, kind and wonderful teacher. I remember she would often stroll along the railroad tracks in St.C. and would comment about things she found down there. What always impressed me about her, was how gentle-spirited she always was.

Maureen Carroll Neely
7 years ago

Mrs. Morrison was a wonderful teacher. She was dedicated to the education of her students, and extremely professional. She taught me Earth Science as a freshman @ St. C. Later, she was one of my late mother’s good friends. Golf, or Bridge brought them together, I’m not sure which… I always loved to see her walk home from church – she had such verve in her step. She was just delightful! What a good long life she lived as she influenced so many people along the way. Rest in peace, Helen. God has blessed us with you!

Michalene Lewis
7 years ago

Mrs.Morrison was my advanced biology teacher back in the 70’s. She was also a member of St. Joseph’s Church for a short period of time, where I also attended. Thank you for being a wonderful example of what life is .

Richard Hall
7 years ago

My name is Richard “Lefty” Hall. I was a history teacher at St. Clairsville High School from 1967-2005. I live in Barnesville. I was deeply saddened to hear of Helen’s passing. When I read the obituary so many thoughts crossed my mind. We were on the staff at St. C. until she retired in 1980. I did not see her very much after that until she went to Elmhurst in 2005. I would call or write to her and she would suggest a certain afternoon and we would go at it for a couple or three hours. She appeared to be happy and her mind was crystal clear. On our first visit she insisted I see her “apartment”. She was so proud of it. I remember it being so spacious, truly the comforts of home. Our conversation covered many topics . . . travel, family, teaching experiences at St. C. etc. I remember telling her how much she was respected by the students and faculty. I think her no nonsense approach to her job made some people think she was unfriendly. She told me a coach came to her about a poor grade received by one of his players and if she could do anything about it. I think that brief encounter indicated grades first,sports

second. One of my personal favorite memories was when I was asked one morning to drive the school bus to Barkcamp State Park. She was taking several students on a hands on field trip. A beautiful spring day, but a work day. It was well organized … teams assigned, hand outs and directions for assignments, etc. Believe me it was not a “day off” for those students. I told her how impressed I was with the entire experience. I got great delight in sending her postcards when my wife and I would go on vacation. If we chatted after that she would always say, yes I’ve been to New England or the SE Coast of Maine. If memory serves me, my last postcard would have come from the US Virgin Islands. We spent a week there in late August. What a beautiful place that was . . . St Thomas and St. John. So many stories . . . one day we were talking about our grandchildren I mentioned gifts my wife would purchase, etc. She replied, one of her granddaughters said she would write Helen a letter keeping her up to date on her activities, etc. Helen added, and she’s been doing it like she promised. That’s special! I think my last visit was in 2011. She appeared somewhat weaker and repeated a couple of items but her memory seemed fine. She always made me feel quite comfortable. In closing, I share your grief at this time but also believe you will be celebrating a life well lived. She spoke often of her “family”, and I’m sure you will comfort one another at this difficult time. May God Bless, Lefty & Rita Hall

Julie Harris
7 years ago

My thoughts & prayers are with you at this time. Mrs. Morrison taught me Biology @ St.Clairsville but she also taught me to never give up. God Bless her.

Joan L. Russell
7 years ago

On behalf of the members of Belmont County Retired Teachers Association, we send our heartfelt sympathies to her dear family. Helen lived a very full and rewarding life, even after she retired from teaching!

We pray God’s loving arms will shelter all of you in the coming days, and may each of you have beautiful memories of Helen.

A Memorial Fund gift will be made in Helen’s memory to our Scholarship Fund.

Joan L. Russell, Treasurer

Dan & Debbie Joseph
7 years ago

She was a great lady who had an even greater family. We didn’t know her until we spent time with her at Elmhurst. She was one of my mother’s favorite people. I’ll never forget going into her apartment and seeing photos of her family. She was amazed when I started asking questions about her grandchildren. Once I explained how I well I knew your family, she would always let me know how everyone was. We will all miss her.

randall moore
7 years ago

st. c graduate Mrs. Morrison was my favorite teacher of all biology and adv. bio her family is in my prayers