I received news this week that Helmut Lämmlen has gone Home. I love Helumt and his family, my German family. They are each dear to me. Helmut is my father’s cousin. His father was Carl Albert “Heinrich” Lämmlen. Heinrich was my grandpa Rudolf’s oldest brother. Heinrich died in 1972. I met his wife, Sofie in 1976 during my first visit to our family in Germany.
I have been back to Germany several times to visit Helmut and his family. I loved them and loved visiting them. Helmut taught me about my German family members and told me stories of his life and what it was like during the war. He was a farmer and wine grower, like most of my ancestors. I felt near them when I was in their vineyards and fields that have long been in our family. Helmut was my connection to them and I loved him.
Helmut came to America to work on my grandpa’s farm in 1955-56. He learned some English then and always tried to use what he remembered. Here he is in 1955 helping on our farm. I photographed Helmut’s photo album of his time in Reedley and will share that in a post soon.My brother, Eric spent a summer in Germany working on Helmut’s farm after his LDS mission to Germany. We always enjoyed these exchanges with our families.
Here is a photo of Helmut, his parents Sofie and Heinrich, and his sister Elly taken in the early 1960s. Elly tragically died in childbirth in 1965.Helmut and his sister, Elly and Helmut with Marie:
Here are a few photos taken in 2009 when I visited and met with the local leaders to share my family research with them.
Helmut at my grandpa Rudolf’s childhood home:Helmut’s son, Martin, Helmut, and Rudolf, another cousin to my father. Rudolf died in 2015.Helmut’s wife, Marie, who is the best cook Ever!Helmut with my husband John, sharing family stories:Here I am with Elly, Helmut, Marie and Martin. Elly and Martin’s sister Regine died in 1991.Here are the family vineyards by Leingarten:
And this is Leingarten, where my German family has lived for 100s of years.Helmut’s Obituary and Funeral information:
These photos are from today’s funeral service for Helmut.