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George Leo Heilman

Thursday, August 9, 2012
9:00 AM until 5:00 PM
6:00 PM until 8:00 PM
Silvernale-Silha Funeral Home
53 1st Avenue Southeast
Beach, ND 58621

Friday, August 10, 2012
9:00 AM
St. John The Baptist Catholic Church
142 2nd Avenue Northeast
Beach, ND 58621

Special Services:
A Vigil Service will be held at 7:00 P.M. on Thursday, August 9, 2012 in the Chapel of the Silvernale-Silha Funeral Home in Beach.

Springfield, Missouri: George Leo Heilman, age 82, of Springfield, formerly of Beach, North Dakota passed away on Friday, August 3, 2012 in Springfield after a courageous and long battle with Alzheimer's Disease. Visitation will be held from 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. and a Vigil Service will be held at 7:00 P.M.on Thursday, August 9, 2012 in the Chapel of the Silvernale-Silha Funeral Home in Beach. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 9:00 A.M. MDT on Friday, August 10, 2012 at St. John The Baptist Catholic Church in Beach with Father Daniel Berg officiating. Rite of Committal with military honors will be at 3:00 P.M. CDT on Friday, August 10, 2012 in North Dakota Veteran’s Cemetery in Mandan, North Dakota. Silvernale-Silha Funeral Home of Beach has been entrusted with the arrangements.
George was born in Bowdle, South Dakota to Rose and Pete Heilman on November 15, 1929. George grew up on a farm expressing often the harsh winters, the long walks to school, and his beloved pony which was his main form of transportation to town. Looking to leave the farm life, George enlisted in the United States Army and was stationed at Ft. Richardson, Alaska. There he was the Mess Sergeant and cut hair on the side and later was honorably discharged from the Army on November 2, 1953. Having married Dorothy Mathern, George left the service and pursued Barber College in Fargo, North Dakota. He later moving to Minot to barber with his brother and finally settled in Beach where he partnered with another barber for a short time, establishing George’s Barber shop, and later George’s Style Shop. There he and his wife Dorothy raised their family of ten children.
George also enjoyed golf, dancing, bowling, baking, taxidermy and cooking. He was a devout Catholic and served St. John's faithfully, and passed the beliefs and values of his faith to his children. George was a community man; committed to the Knight’s of Columbus, and the Lion's Club. Along with his barber business, George also worked the Bijou Theater part-time for a few years.
George reluctantly sold his business and left the community that he loved so much to begin a long battle with Alzheimer’s Disease, moving to Springfield, where his daughter, Mary Kay and his son-in-law, Pat Johnston, cared for him during his final years.
George enjoyed his work at the barber shop, and serving his community. It was more than a job; for him it was about building a community and contributing to the families and businesses of Beach. George's was a favorite gathering place for the area, a friendly, welcoming place to connect with friends and neighbors, and meet new people. He was remembered as a good conversationalist. George did not anticipate the day he would retire because Beach was more than a community of customers and business associates. They were family whom he deeply loved and cared for, taking personal responsibility and consistency in doing a job well done for everyone he encountered. Being available for his customers, and the community, was very important to George.
George was preceded in death by his parents, Rose and Pete Heilman; children, Kathy, Joe and Jeffery Heilman; grandson, Beau Polensky and siblings, Joe Heilman and Magdalene Gisi.
He leaves behind his children; Joyce (Cliff) Polensky of Alexandria, Minnesota, Duane (Carry) Heilman of Eldorado, California, Kenny Heilman of Davie, Florida, Mary Kay (Pat) Johnston of Ava, Missouri, Kevin Heilman of Walkersville, Maryland, Steve (Marie) Heilman of Winters, California, Lisa Heilman of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada and Robert Heilman of Mandan, North Dakota; siblings, Pius Heilman, Florence Molson, Raymond Heilman, Josephine Mathern, Rose Lawringer and Virginia Schmultz; twenty grandchildren, Manahia, Cathy, Brandy and Abby Heilman, Lee, Angie and Sarah Polensky, Katy, Amy and Shelly Heilman, Renetta, Tim, Josh and Caleb Johnston, Jake and Jessica Hatley, Thomas and Jessica Heilman, Daniel and Kimberly Heilman; twelve great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
The Heilman Family gives thanks to God for the blessing of being George’s children, his commitment to support and love us, his church, and his community. George Leo Heilman, aka, George the Barber, as he is affectionately called by many leaves lasting memories that we celebrate.
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