Dec 20, 1942 - Nov 18, 2021


December 20, 1942 - November 18, 2021

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Helen K. Carlin, beloved wife, mother and grandmother, died on Thursday, November 18, 2021, at the age of 78.

In all of those years Helen accomplished many things and along the way made friends. After obtaining a B.A. in comparative literature from George Washington University, she went on to graduate school at the University of Michigan, earning a M.A. also in comparative literature. Throughout her life she read widely and avidly, but Helen's consuming interest was in all things French, the language and the literature. At the height of her career she taught French in high school and college, even going so far as to teach points of French grammar to native French students. As if this weren't enough, Helen and a colleague delighted students by leading them on many trips to France, exploring the beauty, the culture and the history. Later in retirement, she introduced her husband to these same joys. She was an expert.

These are some of the facts in a full and adventurous life, but while true, they do not begin to describe Helen as a person. That is not easy to do, because she was both subtle and complex. By temperament she was sweet and kind, always looking for the good in people and hoping to find it. Yet she could also be critical and was more than aware that our world is far from perfect. She could laugh, get angry, see irony and in her presence cast a strong influence on others. She was well worth knowing, as her friends would testify. Above all, she was someone who loved and was loved by her family all her life.

Helen is survived by her husband, Scott; two sons, Thomas (Ashley) and John (Zhouhui); her grandchildren, Emma, Nick, Lizzie, Maddie and Lucas. She was preceded in death by her parents, Anne and Joseph; and her sister, Arlene.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, December 4, 2021 at 11 a.m. at Canale-Tonella Funeral Home and Cremation Services with Dr. Aaron Scholnik officiating. Visitation will be held starting at 10:30 a.m. until the time of the service. A luncheon will follow the service in the funeral home. Burial will take place in Park Cemetery.

Canale-Tonella Funeral Home and Cremation Services is assisting Helen's family where memories and condolences may be shared at canalefuneral.com.

To send flowers to the family or plant a memorial tree in memory of HELEN K. CARLIN, please visit our Tribute Store


Sat, Dec 4, 2021 at 10:30 am - 11:00 am
Canale-Tonella Funeral Home and Cremation Services

526 North Third Street
Marquette, MI 49855

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Memorial Service
Sat, Dec 4, 2021 at 11:00 am
Canale-Tonella Funeral Home and Cremation Services

526 North Third Street
Marquette, MI 49855

A luncheon will be served in the funeral home immediately following the service.

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