John Paul Helm, eldest son of Paul Helm and Lillie-Pearl Alexander, was born Dec.29 1941 at St. Louis Maternity Hospital.
John graduated with honors from Edwardsville High School in 1960 and was a National Merit Finalist.
John earned his B.A. at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. He was chosen outstanding senior mathematics major and was graduated with high honors in 1964. He next attended Purdue University on several assistantships and was awarded the Ph.D. in mathematics in 1970. His thesis was “Two Topics in Recursive Function Theory.” John then accepted a position as associate professor of mathematics at Radford College in Radford, Virginia. He later taught there in the Computer Sciences Department, which he helped to organize in 1989. John retired in 2005.
On Aug. 14, 1981 he married Jane Smiley (nee Purtle) at Radford, Virginia. In 1990 she was granted an uncontested divorce.
John lived at Radford, from 1970 until 2014 when he moved to St. Charles, MO. His hobbies included playing the piano, following National League Baseball, collecting stamps, and cooking. He was once an excellent left-handed tennis player. He liked most board and card games, but his favorite was bridge. For many years, John had been a member of the Administrative Board of the Methodist Student Center at Radford, and he served as treasurer for six years. He taught the Men’s Bible Class at Grove United Methodist Church in Radford, where he was a member from 1971 to 2014. Since coming to St. Charles, he had been a member of First United Methodist Church.
John is survived by two brothers David (Jean) Helm of St. Charles, MO and Richard (Judy) Helm of Brimfield, IL and a sister Carol (Mike) O’Hare of Northbrook, IL, as well as nephews Stefan (Beth) Helm and Nathan Helm of St. Charles, Ryan (Matt) O’Hare of St. Louis Park, MN, and Damon O’Hare of Palatine, IL, nieces Amanda Helm of New Orleans and Rebecca (Travis) Wilson of Clive, IA, as well as five grand nieces and nephews: Jeremiah and Titus Helm, and Andrew, Meredith, and Gabriella Wilson.
Memorials may be made in John’s name to First United Methodist Church of St. Charles or Oasis Food Pantry.
Services: The family is being served by Baue Funeral Home. Visitation will be held on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019 from 2 – 3 p.m. at Baue Funeral Home, 620 Jefferson Street, St. Charles, MO. Memorial service to follow at 4 p.m. Memorials to First United Methodist Church of St. Charles or Oasis Food Pantry.