Cover photo for Helen "Billie" Caven's Obituary
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1920 Helen "billie" 2020

Helen "Billie" Caven

October 28, 1920 — December 30, 2020

Helen Rose “Billie” Caven, age 100, passed away peacefully with family by her side in Hendricks, Minnesota on Wednesday, December 30, 2020. A funeral service will be held at 11am on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 at St John the Baptist Catholic Church in Mankato, MN and live streamed at www.spencerowen.com/obituary/hellen-billie-caven. Visitation will be held from 9:30-10:30am, prior to the service. Burial will take place at St. Matthew’s Catholic Cemetery in Vernon Center.

Billie was born on October 28, 1920 in Pomeroy, Iowa to Harm and Reka (Rosenboom) Doyen. She attended country school until the 8th grade. At the age of 14, Billie left home to start making her own way. She worked many jobs in her lifetime. Her first job was as domestic help for the Clements family in Mankato. In their travels, she drew very close to them and would share stories of her years in their employee. Notably, Billie worked as a Rosie the Riveter, in California during WWII. On February 12, 1946, Billie married Joseph L. Caven in Vernon Center. After marrying, she was a farm wife and homemaker. In addition she held jobs as a waitress, nursing home dietary staff, and 10 years with Electrocraft in Winnebago. After her retirement she volunteered at the Mapleton Nursing Home well into her 90’s, “helping take care of the old people”. She was an active member of St. Matthews Catholic Church, teaching catechism, and helping with her church circle.

Billie was a busy woman and hard worker. In her spare time, she enjoyed walking, reading, crocheting, gardening, playing solitaire, listening to music, and dancing. Billie’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren held a special place in her heart. She really got to know each child and never missed a birthday for any of her grands, calling each child from her flip phone on their day.

She is survived by her children, Pam (John) Nibbe of Lake Benton; Peg (Leon) Kietzer of Madison, SD, and Pat (Gail) Caven of Amboy; sister-in-law Ora Doyen, 8 grandchildren; and 20 great grandchildren.

She is preceded in death by her parents, husband, Joseph Caven, infant daughter Rita Caven, brothers, Lawrence and Raymond Doyen, and sister, Laura Witter, Janette Pick, and Ancile Osmundson.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are preferred to St. Matthew’s Catholic Church, mailed to St. Teresa Catholic Church, 104 W Silver St, Mapleton, MN 56065.

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