Helen Eiesland

July 11, 1930 - April 24, 2019

Service: Funeral service will be at 11:00 am Monday, April 29, 2019 at Grace Lutheran Church, 3300 E. 18th Street, Sioux Falls, with the family available for visitation at 10:00 am.

    Helen Jean Eiesland, age 88, passed away peacefully Wednesday evening, April 24, 2019 at Sanford USD Medical Center.

     Helen was born July 11, 1930 in Canton, SD to Jesse and Sophie (Olson) Helgerson. She was raised on a farm north of Canton and graduated from Canton High School in 1948.  Helen went on to General Beadle State Teachers College where she earned her teaching certificate. She became a teacher at a country school, Prairie Grove. On June 1st, 1951 she was united in marriage to Vincent Eiesland at Canton Lutheran Church.  Vince and Helen enjoyed smooth strolls around the dance floor, family activities and reunions, and raising their family of nine children together.

     Helen worked as a homemaker until 1979. From 1980 until she retired, she enjoyed working with Arlyce Johnson as a commercial cleaning person, working as a childcare provider at Child’s World and then eventually providing daycare for her own grandchildren in her home. Following that she worked as a staff member at Qualified Presort Services.

     Helen was an active member at Grace Lutheran Church. She joyfully worshiped, volunteered, and served in many capacities. She loved spending time with her church family and shared her talents in many ways over the years. She was a choir member, Sunday school teacher, council member, Bible school teacher, soup and pie supper coordinator, nursery volunteer, and pianist for the choir. Helen also enjoyed Bible studies and fellowship with her dear friends and “church daughters” as a member of Hannah Circle. One of her greatest joys was visiting with members and guests at Grace Lutheran where she was lovingly given the name of “church mom” by many in the congregation. Helen was a volunteer for the Center for Active Generations and the SD ELCA Synod office. In addition, she crocheted many hats, gloves, mittens, and blankets for Project Linus. She volunteered her time helping at Sioux River Valley Community Health Center. Helen also enjoyed traveling to see her children and grandchildren, watching Canaries baseball games, social gatherings with her friends and family, ceramics, bargain shopping, and keeping busy with her many hobbies. As a lifelong music lover, she enjoyed playing the piano, singing, and in recent years, learned to play an organ that entertained the residents at Prairie Village.  Her baking was appreciated by many throughout the years as she shared thousands of homemade pies, cakes, and cookies.

     Grateful for having shared her life are her children: Mark Eiesland of Sioux Falls; Marlyce Buch of Highlands Ranch, CO; Shirley Soderstrom of Black Hawk, SD; Becky (Rick) Pittenger of Fargo, ND; Joel (Patty) Eiesland of Brandon; Jim (Suzy) Eiesland of Sioux Falls; Bob Eiesland of Sioux Falls; and Laura Eiesland of Sioux Falls; 12 grandchildren, Sheri Soderstrom, Amber (Matt) Dvorak, Amy (David) Skinner, Stacie Soderstrom, Ryan (Kristina) Pittenger,  Brandon (Meredith) Pittenger, Kristen (Matt) Peterson, Sara (Jordan) Gillis, Brian Eiesland, Andrew Eiesland,  Alison Eiesland, and Alex Stavrenos; and 6 great-grandchildren: Darryan Andrews, Gavin Dvorak, Lionel and Quincy Gillis, Graham Peterson and Emery Pittenger.  Helen is preceded in death by her husband, Vincent; son, Steve; son-in-law, Dr. Jerry Soderstrom; parents, Jesse and Sophie Helgerson; brother, Kermit Helgerson and sister, Doris Olseth. Funeral service will be at 11:00 am Monday, April 29, 2019 at Grace Lutheran Church, 3300 E. 18th Street, Sioux Falls, with the family available for visitation at 10:00 am. Private interment will be at Beaver Creek Lutheran Cemetery at a later time.

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  1. Ann Romsdahl on April 26, 2019 said:

    Eiesland family, my deepest sympathies to all of you. I was blessed to know Helen through her attendance at the Shetek Women’s retreat with the other ladies from Grace Lutheran. I always enjoyed the time visiting with her, she truly was a special lady. I purchased one of her afghans at the Soup Supper several years ago and when I use it I always think of her fondly.
    Your are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Ann Romsdahl

  2. Susanne Smith on April 26, 2019 said:

    I am sad to hear that Helen passed away! She was such a sweetheart! Even after she stopped volunteering at Active Generations she would come to every craft sale we had and always stopped by to talk to me. I will miss her!
    You are in my thoughts!
    Susanne Smith

  3. Myrna & Chuck Hammond on April 26, 2019 said:

    Eiesland Family:
    Our sympathies are with you all. Thank you for sharing your Mother and Grandmother with so many of us over the years. We are truly blessed to have her be a part of our family.
    God Bless you all!
    Myrna & Chuck

  4. Maxine Evenson Savage on April 26, 2019 said:

    I want to send sympathy to Helen’s family, I recognized her name in the paper obituaries as someone I knew and thought so much of many, many years ago. Alvera and Myron Ostraat used to have the “Evenson” family picnics at their house on Memorial Day, and Helen lived neighbors so would come over and spend the day with our family. I really enjoyed knowing her, and know she will be dearly missed by so many people.

  5. Rick Pittenger son-in-law on April 26, 2019 said:

    Helen was everything you’d ever want in a Mother and Mother in law! An outstanding cook, Baker, cuddler, smiler, hugger, pianist, singer, hummer, happy, exuder of Grace…lived her witness simply and authentically and and and..

  6. Olseth15@gmail.com on April 26, 2019 said:

    I’m sorry sorry for you loss. She was such a great lady.

  7. jamie.ferguson on April 26, 2019 said:

    So sorry for you loss. She was a great lady to everyone that she meet.

  8. Robert & Marie Mile on April 27, 2019 said:

    We wanted to share our condolences with Helen’s family. Such a wonderful lady. It is never easy to have to say goodbye to a loved one. The pain of loss can be unbearable. Our Creator promises us that one day this pain will be just a memory. That beautiful promise can be found at Revelation 21:3,4. Our pain and suffering will be a thing of the past, and we can cry tears of joy as we welcome back the ones that we love so much. We hope you find comfort in those promises.

  9. sheri Soderstrom on April 27, 2019 said:


  10. Chris Corbit on April 27, 2019 said:

    Dear Marlyce and family. I am so sorry for your loss. The loss of a parent is a great one.God bless you all.
    Chris Corbit

  11. Tom Kassube on April 27, 2019 said:

    So very sorry that you lost your beloved Mother. Helen was a lovely lady that I am thankful to have known.

  12. Nancy Beck on April 28, 2019 said:

    I didn’t know Helen for very long, but loved her from the first time I met her. She was such a lovely person and I enjoyed spending time with her at coffee and pot luck dinners at Prairie Village. She will be greatly missed and remembered fondly. I wish you all the comfort and peace you deserve at this difficult time. God bless you all.