Cover photo for Helen R. Buller's Obituary
Helen R. Buller Profile Photo
1925 Helen 2019

Helen R. Buller

January 22, 1925 — January 25, 2019

Helen Rose (Unruh) Buller, devoted wife, loving mother, grandmother and great grandmother went to be with the Lord on Friday, January 25, 2019.

Helen was born to Anthony H. & Anna (Albrecht) Unruh in Freeman, SD on January 22, 1925. Her mother passed away when she was seven. After graduating from the Glendive, MT high school in 1943, she attended Bethel College, North Newton, for a year. In 1946, she continued with a General Studies degree at Bible College in St. Paul, MN. She also took 18 private music lessons at St. Paul to accomplish her goal of learning to play the marimba.

Helen married Charles C. Buller on June 20, 1946, in Bloomfield, MT. They both enrolled at Grace Bible Institute in Omaha, NE, attending the first and last semesters together. They both graduated in 1955 with two degrees and four children, Gilbert, Edith, Ethel, and Duane.

The Bullers accepted their first pastorate in Washington, NE where they served for three years. As a pastor’s wife, Helen made many crafts and flannel graphs for Vacation Bible and Sunday Schools. They moved to McClusky, ND to serve at a Mennonite Brethren church from 1958 – 1961. Their final pastorate was in Premont, TX, where they served for five years.

The year after a car accident claimed Charles’ life, on Sept 5, 1965, Helen moved to North Newton, KS. In 2006 she moved into Kidron Bethel Village, where she lived until her passing.

Faith was very important to Helen and she showed what was important by the way she lived her life, especially in times of adversity. She was active in many supportive roles at Koerner Heights Church, where she was a member since 1968. She taught preschool Sunday school classes for 13 years and the special adults Overcomers class for 21 years. She organized funeral meals for many years and visited widows and the sick, often taking a home cooked meal.

Helen also served in various leadership positions at Koerner Heights as council board member, elder, Sunday school superintendent, Pre-school coordinator, primary choir director, and Women’s Fellowship president.

Throughout her lifetime, Helen invested in missions and enjoyed participating in numerous missions trips, locally and overseas. From 1974 – 1976, she completed a two-year voluntary term, working with the Oklahoma Child Evangelism state office and as a church secretary.

Helen was an accomplished musician, sharing her gift of marimba playing with churches and other venues. In 1998, she recorded a CD of hymns, “Under His Wings,” which has been enjoyed by many.

Helen enjoyed various hobbies and ‘never’ sat down without a project in her hands. She made paper embroidery cards to accompany Christmas gifts. Her warmth will live on in the afghans and quilts she made for each family member. She collected state and souvenir plates and insisted all 56 of them needed to be hung each time she moved. She enjoyed reading and learned how to use a laptop at age 90. A picture puzzle was often setting on her table, along with her sewing machine.

Helen was also a dedicated volunteer. From 1967-1979, Helen served the Newton community as president, secretary, treasurer, and board member of the Harvey County Association for Retarded Citizens. She led the Kidron Bethel Auxiliary for several years and played in their hand bell choir from 2006 - 2017. Almost weekly until age 93, Helen sewed and checked MCC health, baby and school kits for overseas projects. She transcribed many of the ‘Thru the Bible’ series radio programs.

Hospitality was offered to countless guests. Each one was asked to sign the guest book when they left. At various times, she had one of her grandchildren or others living in her home. A special delight for Helen was attending the Unruh and Buller family reunions, as well as local family gatherings, where she enjoyed visiting with everyone, young and old alike. She always had a sweet smile and helping hand to offer.

Helen’s employment included Crossroads Coop in North Newton, Hesston Corporation (Agco), Goossen Law Office, Kansas Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (KARF), and Meadowlark Homestead.

In a reflection Helen wrote in 1989, she said, “As long as God grants me life, I pray that I might be sensitive to His leading. I pray that God will use me…” She would want to be remembered for her devout faith in the Bible and in her Savior.

Helen is survived by her five half-siblings: Evelyn (Don) Klein of Langdon, ND; Betty Blough of Sandy, UT; Phyllis (Dennis) Lobdell of Sun River, MT; Jim Unruh of Hempstead, TX; and Jerry (Michal) Unruh, Siksia, MT; four children: Gilbert (Jan), Silverton, OR; Edith Buller-Breer, Newton; Ethel Buller, North Newton; and Duane (Arlita), Newton; eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren with another on the way.

She was preceded in death by parents, Anthony & Anna Unruh; step-mother, Frieda Schmidt Unruh; infant siblings, Anna and William; husband, Charles; brothers Willard (Selma), Robert (Myrtle), Verney (Belva) and Leslie (Marie) Unruh; sister-in-law, Bonnie (Moore) Unruh, and one grandchild. She left a valued legacy and will be greatly missed.

A memorial service celebrating Helen’s life will be on Friday, February 1, at 11:00am at Koerner Heights Church, 320 N Meridian, Newton. Pastor Dave Froese and former Koerner Heights pastor, Mark Isaac, will share the services. Following the memorial service, a bell will toll 94 times, once for each year of Helen’s life. A light lunch will follow. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Helen’s life.

A private family burial of the cremains will take place prior to the memorial service.

Visitation with the family will be on Thursday, January 31, from 6:30 – 8pm at Koerner Heights.

In lieu of flowers, Helen requested memorials to Mennonite Brethren Missions or Child Evangelism Fellowship, c/o Broadway Colonial Funeral Home, 120 E. Broadway, Newton, Ks. 67114.

Arrangements are by Broadway Colonial Funeral Home, Newton.



To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Helen R. Buller, please visit our flower store.


Visits: 0

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree