July 17, 1931 — Dec. 9, 2017
Helen Gaston, a longtime resident of Seaside, Oregon, passed away on Dec. 9, 2017 at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland. She was accompanied by her three children, Nannette Bierma, Renee Millikan and Robert Gaston, and passed peacefully.
Originally from Wisconsin, she moved to Oregon and married her longtime husband Robert W. Gaston. In addition to her three children, Helen is survived by her older sister, Elvira Stevens of Texas, and eight grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.
Gaston had many interests, which included many volunteer positions as well as paid positions throughout her life. Change seems to be the constant.
She worked at CITA in Astoria for several years helping special needs adults obtain employment. She volunteered at church, for Girl Scouts, and was on the boards of museums in Seaside and Clatsop County.
She was an avid reader and an expert in genealogy and several history subjects. She wrote grants, organized volunteers, stood in the rain and wind for hours boiling sea water for salt for living history programs, and even wrote a curriculum for teachers to use on native peoples of the north Oregon Coast.
Gaston adored people and welcomed strangers. When at home with small children, she hosted foreign exchange students and traveling high school bands. She welcomed people that stopped by her house on the Prom to fill their canteen with water.
Her curiosity about others later turned into Gaston’s Beachside Bed and Breakfast. Later in life, she was able to travel to many different countries to satisfy her interests. After putting on both of her daughters’ dream weddings, Gaston helped with friends’ weddings, which eventually turned into a wedding and catering business. She was at one time referred to as the “Martha Stewart of Seaside.”
She loved decorating and entertaining and did so even up into her 80s with the help of friends and family. Just before her passing, she was busy decorating her apartment in the retirement home with her daughters for the Christmas holiday. She will be greatly missed by many friends and family.
A funeral mass to celebrate her life will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017, at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church in Seaside. A reception will immediately follow at the Parish Hall.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church, St. Vincent’s Medical Foundation, or Seaside Museum & Historical Society.