Albert Adolph Helmar
Apr 29, 1927 - May 19, 2012
Albert Adolph Helmar was born in Stamford, Connecticut, on April 29, 1927 to Albert and Bertha Helmar. On May 19, 2012, he died at home at the age of 85, in Rancho Cordova, California, surrounded by his family.
Al joined the Navy in 1944 as a Naval Cadet assigned to engineering training at Ohio State University. At OSU, he met Mercedes Bunda, whom he married in September 1947. After the war, he continued at OSU, graduating in 1950 with a degree in mechanical engineering. Al worked in Columbus, Ohio, until moving to Philadelphia in 1953 to work for Westinghouse, later transferring to their operations in Kansas City, Kansas, in 1954. In 1960, as the aerospace industry rapidly expanded, he was recruited by the Aerojet General Corporation in Rancho Cordova, where he worked on projects for the Apollo Space Program and the Trident Nuclear Submarine Program until his retirement in 1989.
Al’s greatest pride has always been his family. He and Mercedes raised seven children, and were blessed with nine grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. Family vacations were mostly spent camping throughout the western United States and Canada, where he imparted his appreciation for hiking, fishing and enjoying the outdoors. After his retirement, he and Mercedes traveled extensively throughout the world.
Since joining St. John Vianney Parish in 1960, Al was an active participant in a variety of church and school projects. He served on the Parish Council as as a Commentator/Lector during Mass. He also dedicated many hours as a volunteer at St. John Vianney School, where one of his favorite activities was introducing students to science by making and launching bottle rockets. Al also volunteered his services at Cordova Gardens School, Loaves and Fishes, and various Boy Scout troops.
Al is survived by his wife, Mercedes, and their children: Mark (Sharon), Michele, Vicki (Chuck), Michael (Janet), Gretchen, Melissa, and John (Viviana); their grandchildren: Jason, Jacob (Jessica), Sarah (Nathan), Luke, Aaron (Liz), Samantha, Christopher (Jessie), Emily (Brandon) and Michelle (Felix); and eight great-grandchildren: Soleil, Otto, Carter, Lily, Savannea, Avery, Roscoe and Madelyn. He is also survived by his brother Henry (Cheryl) of New Jersey. Al is preceded in death by his grandson, David. A Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted at St. John Vianney Church, Rancho Cordova, on Saturday, May 26, 2012 at 10:00am. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to St. John Vianney School or Loaves and Fishes.