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Helen Delores Wilson Chase was born February 1, 1935; she was the youngest of eleven children born to the late James Edward Wilson, Sr. (Pop) and Sarah Blanche Sherwood Wilson of Oxford, Maryland. Having lost her mother by the age of five, Helen was raised by her then single father, with the help of her older sister, the late Mary Geneva Wilson Pritchett. Growing up, her father made sure she and her two other siblings (Oneida Christine and Lester Lee Wilson) attended church. She was a member of John Wesley United Methodist Church in Screamersville. The three loved to sing; so Helen Oneida and Lester formed a gospel group called the Missing Link and frequently sang at the church. Helen’s favorite songs were The Gospel Train and Time Has Made A Change.
Helen was educated in the Talbot County school system where she graduated in 1953 from Old Moton High School on Port Street in Easton, Maryland. During her high school years, she was known to her classmates as “Coolie”. Her older sister Oneida often referred to her as “Baby Sis” and members of her family called her Lois or Delores, but she is most affectionately known as Helen. While in high school Helen loved to roller skate, a skill she mastered with ease.
On December 27, 1954, Helen was joined in Holy Matrimony to her childhood sweetheart, retired police chief, Colonel Walter E. Chase, Sr. Together they had five children. Helen was affectionately called by her family “Nana”.
Helen and Walter, Sr. made their home in Easton Maryland for approximately nine years, where she was a member of Bethel A.M.E. Church; upon the birth of their fifth and final child, they built a home on World Farm Road in Oxford, Maryland. There she resided with her husband and five children until their move to Trappe, Maryland in 1998.
Helen worked various jobs throughout the years, but the most memorable ones were her employment at Trappe Frozen Food and her jobs as a domestic worker for Dr. Gregg of St. Michaels, Md. And General Foster and Frances Tate of Royal Oak, Maryland for 21 years. Upon the death of Frances Tate, Helen retired.
Helen was an active member of the Socialettes Club and the Willing Workers. She was a member of Waters United Methodist Church and had been since she moved to Oxford in the 1960s. She was a member of the Women’s Choir, the Friendship Choir, Chaplain for the local unit of the United Methodist Women; she served on the Nomination Committee and the Stewardship Committee. She also served as member of the John Wesley Preservation Society.
After her retirement, Helen loved to travel and visited various locations throughout the United States such as New York, Philadelphia, Georgia, Florida, and Illinois, just to name a few.
Helen was a woman dedicated to her family, who loved God and always tried to help others. Her favorite phrase when asked how she was doing was “I’m Blessed”.
She is preceded in death by her parents James E. Wilson, Sr. and Sarah Blanche Sherwood, three brothers, James, Jr., Robert, and Lester Wilson; seven sister Edna Wilson, Margaret Banks, Annie V. Shelton, Henrietta Wilson, Mary G. Pritchett, Sarah Kellum, and Oneida Wilson.
She is survived by her husband of sixty-eight years Colonel Walter E. Chase, Sr. (retired); three sons: Lt. Colonel Walter E. Chase, Jr. (retired)(Carol), Dr. Tyrone A. Chase (Patricia), David D. Chase; two daughters: Shirlee D. Chase and Yolanda Y. Chase; four grandchildren: Tyrone Jackson, Arthur Gomez, Gregory Gibson, and Breanna Chase; ten great grandchildren: Tajah Jackson, Juemee Gomez, Mikayla Gibson, Kohen Gibson, Aiyana Harris, Delmara Simmons, Nesjah Jackson, Daniel Torsell, Diajh Jackson; five great great grandchildren: Bryson, Nasir, Zion, Amil, and Kfie and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.