Lester Paul VerHelst, 84, of Belmond, IA, formerly of West Liberty, IA, and a Rockwell, IA, area native, died, December 14, 2022, at the Rehabilitation Center of Belmond. Public Service will be held Saturday, January 7, 2023, AT 11:00 AM, at the Goodell United Methodist Church, Goodell, IA. The Rev. deb Devine will be officiating. A luncheon will follow the service at the church. Burial will be held in the spring at the Amsterdam Cemetery east of Goodell. The service will be live streamed on the Andrews Funeral Homes Facebook page. Just LIKE the page to view. Memorials may directed in Lester’s name to the family or the Goodell United Methodist Church. January 14th will be the make-up date if the weather becomes inclimate.
Lester was born to Camillus (Mell) and Josette (Josie) Lewis VerHelst on October 15, 1938, near Rockwell. He grew up in Goodell, IA and graduated from Belmond High School in 1956.
Lester met Rev. Don Thompson in Stilson, Iowa. They became lifelong friends and ministered together in Goodell, Toledo, Lehigh, and West Liberty…all in Iowa, with Rev. Thompson preaching and Lester playing organ/piano and serving on various committees. Lester was organist/pianist in churches in Clear Lake, Toledo, Lehigh, and West Liberty…all in Iowa. He served as Chief Liaison Officer of the Laotian and Vietnamese communities in West Liberty.
Lester had a great passion and gift of caring for others, which was very evident in his care and dedication to Rev. Thompson during his illness and subsequent death. He enjoyed travel and spending winter in Florida and looked forward to going on many fishing trips with family and friends. He enjoyed planning and organizing parties and other gatherings. He had loved fancy cars such as Cadillac’s and Lincolns and was known to drive fast all of the time. Lester had a strong faith throughout his entire life journey.
Lester was preceded in death by his parents and 11 siblings: Max, Melvin, George, Violet, Earl, Kenny, Richard, Merle, Florence, Russell, and Virginia.
He is survived by adopted son Ty (Loan) Nguyen; four grandchildren: Amy, Tom Son, Paul, and Alex Nguyen; a sister Gail (Larry) Langlitz, Belmond, IA; brother Leland (Norma) VerHelst, Pella, IA; sister-in-law, JoAnn VerHelst, Klemme, IA, and many nieces and nephews.
Andrews Funeral Homes, Belmond, IA.