Ongoing story collecting and sharing with Helen Schuller in Welch West Virginia.
Schuler is southern West Virginia native living 93 years of her life in McDowell County, WV. Spending her childhood chasing her polish born dad across the Appalachian Mountains to forage, she willingly entered a career book keeping for the coal mines. Helen married the love of her life, Joe Schuler, a decorated Navy Veteran who after dropping out of school in the eighth grade, became a highly valued problem solver and equipment manager for the mines, as well as a skilled model train builder. Helen describes her wedding as the last great outdoor wedding of Gary Holler - the miners and foreman set up an outdoor stage in her daddy’s back yard for the ceremony and a polish band played as they danced through the night, as she and Joe did many nights until his stroke, and eventual passing.
Helen was named American Legion volunteer of the year, served the Catholic Church in Welch and maintained the Welch Community Cemetery. She was also an avid bowler! This essay was completed just months before Schuler was unwillingly forced from her home by her younger sister to an assisted living facility in Princeton WV. Helen’s sister proceeded to embezzled thousands of dollars out of Schuler’s bank account, and sell many of her prized possessions from under her.