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Obituary for Hellen Arning (Swalley)

Benjamin Funeral Service - Nowata, Oklahoma - 918-273-2700........................................................

Graveside services for Hellen Jean Arning are 4:00 P.M., Friday, August 11, 2017 at Memorial Park Cemetery in Nowata with Pastor Dean Bridges officiating. Online condolences may be left at Arrangements have been entrusted to Benjamin Funeral Service.

Hellen Jean Arning, 90, passed away Tuesday, August 8, 2017 at her home in Nowata. She was born April 13, 1927 in Delaware, Oklahoma to Fred and Pearl Elizabeth (Norris) Swalley. Helen was Delaware Warrior and was in the graduating class of 1945. Hellen worked at McLellan’s Dime Store off and on for a couple of years. She married Robert Winsell Arning on August 12, 1946 in Independence, Kansas. She worked for the Baldwin Shirt Factory in Nowata from opening until they closed about a year or so later. She worked for the Nowata Tag Agency during the winter months as needed.

Hellen and Robert started moving as they could find work. The lived in Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, California, Texas, and Kansas. She worked in a drug store in New Mexico, a hotel coffee shop in Texas, the Chamber of Commerce in Arizona, a steak house and Shell Oil Company in Texas. They returned to Oklahoma in 1953 and Hellen worked for Sears Roebuck and Company in Tulsa for four years, then Bethlehem Steel Company, Supply Division in Tulsa for 28.5 years until they downsized and she retired early in 1985. Hellen and Robert moved to their farm in Nowata to race horses until 2000 when the last good horse was crippled. They followed their nephew’s football games through high school and college.

Hellen is preceded in death by her parents, Fred and Elizabeth; her husband Robert; siblings, Jim Swalley, Ray K. Swalley, Harry Swalley, Floyd Swalley, John W. Swalley, Edna Swalley, Roy Lee Swalley, Bobby Joe Swalley, Ada Mae Swalley, and Jack Swalley; a step brother, Eddie Dixon. She is survived by two brothers, Fred Swalley, Jr., William M. Swalley and many dear nieces, nephews, and friends.

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