Helen Ann Hunter-Eriksen was born on March 8, 1962 in Independence, Louisiana to the union of Marion Samuel and Rose Lee Hunter. She died at age 52 of colon cancer on July 28, 2014 surrounded by her dear family. Helen was the devoted wife of Paul Robert Eriksen and the loving mother of Trent Austin, Paul Brandon Montgomery and Briana Alexis. Helen was an ambitious, self-made, proactive woman with a strong will and unwavering confidence to mold her own future. She was raised in a large loving family and given responsibility, alongside her loving mother Rose Lee and sister Joyce, to care for her siblings Edward, Judy, Debra and Veronica....
Helen Ann Hunter-Eriksen was born on March 8, 1962 in Independence, Louisiana to the union of Marion Samuel and Rose Lee Hunter. She died at age 52 of colon cancer on July 28, 2014 surrounded by her dear family.
Helen was the devoted wife of Paul Robert Eriksen and the loving mother of Trent Austin, Paul Brandon Montgomery and Briana Alexis.
Helen was an ambitious, self-made, proactive woman with a strong will and unwavering confidence to mold her own future. She was raised in a large loving family and given responsibility, alongside her loving mother Rose Lee and sister Joyce, to care for her siblings Edward, Judy, Debra and Veronica. Despite the comfort of this nurturing environment, her independent spirit led her to leave home and pursue her dream of acting in Los Angeles. There, she graduated from California State University Los Angeles with a B.A. in Theater Arts in 1987.
While studying, she worked full time in the university's financial aid office as a manager where she learned she was a natural born leader. Advancing her career after university, she earned a position in business management in the entertainment industry at Ernst and Young in 1990 and moved on to The Walt Disney Company in 1991 where she aided the expansion of Disney's Southern California themeparks. She later became a successful journalist at the Houston Chronicle for 11 years, all the while keeping her focus on her family and enjoying traveling and studying French among other passions.
It was in fact during a French class she took in college that she met Paul, her dear husband. Their love and devotion to each other through courtship and marriage spanned 32 years.
After the birth of their first son, Trent Austin, Helen and Paul traveled to Europe and lived in Gilleleje, a small fishing village in Northern Denmark. They returned to the US for the birth of her son Paul Brandon Montgomery and not long after settling in Monrovia California she was blessed with a daughter, Briana Alexis.
Helen and her family moved to Katy, Texas in 2000 where she began working as a journalist at the Katy Times. Being recognized for her exceptional writing including coverage for the Associated Press of the Katrina and Rita storm season, Helen gained a position as a reporter at the Houston Chronicle where she covered local events including Katy politics and economic growth, school district education topics and even storm disasters, earning her the title as "the Voice of Katy." She was also instrumental in the establishment of the Katy Performing Arts Society as a founding member.
These milestones culminated to her being chosen to launch the first local Houston Chronicle blog "Inside Katy," where she gained hundreds of followers and brought the community information about local issues, events and people in the news. Her success later lead to her being honored with the Lone Star Award in 2008 for her feature story, "Fahem's Journey" on a young burn victim's recovery.
Helen's family will miss her love, generosity, sincere care for everyone close to her, as well as her strength, elegance and poise even when under pressure. Both her journey and her work have inspired people around her to be insightful, to not accept any form of bigotry, to challenge social norms and to take action in their communities.
Despite an active public life Helen always had time for her family and friends, indeed her family and inner social circle was her life. Without doubt her spirit will live on in her family and those she touched.
Helen is preceded in death by her father Marion Samuel and father-in-law Leif S.A. She is survived by her husband and children, her loving mother Rose Lee Hunter and her siblings Joyce M. Bell, Edward G. Hunter, Judy H. Spooner, Debra H. Bozeman, and Veronica H. Hunter as well as by her three brother-in-laws Nathaniel Bozeman, Leif Eriksen and Gregory Spooner, and a large family including her aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
Her family thanks the Lord for her, for her kindness and love and that she lived such a blessed life. Helen will be deeply missed.
A Visitation and Mass will be held to celebrate her life on August 4, 2014 starting at 10:00am at Epiphany Church (1530 Norwalk Dr. Katy, TX 77450) followed by a memorial service. At 11:00am the Memorial Mass will commence followed by a remembrance reception at 12 noon in the Family Center. Helen will be laid to rest in Southern California, her home for most of her life, at Forest Lawn Covina Hills.
Those wishing to send flowers may contact the following:
August 4, 2014 Memorial Service:
Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Church
1530 Norwalk Dr. Katy, TX 77450
Graveside Service (date to be advised):
Forest Lawn Covina Hills
21300 Via Verde Drive, Covina, CA 91724