John Solos Helgesen, age 73 of Aurora, passed away peacefully in the loving arms of his wife on May 20, 2018 at Seasons Hospice and Palliative Care in Naperville, IL. John was born on December 5, 1944 to his late parents Fritz and Aslaug (Solos) Helgesen in Bergen, Norway. He was proud of his heritage and journeyed to Norway many times throughout his life to visit relatives and reconnect with the natural beauty of his birth country. In his professional life, John was a carpenter by trade and transitioned into construction. He retired as General Superintendent for Meridian Design and Build. His expertise and dedication made him a well respected and valued member of not only the Meridian organization but others as well. Many of these colleagues worked with John for over 20 years, some 40. His loyalty and dedication to his profession was well known and evidenced when John agreed to work on special assignments after his retirement. He was an avid skier his entire life. He became a ski instructor, and later ski director, at Villa Olivia Ski School in Bartlett, IL where he worked for nearly 40 years and shared his love and skill for skiing with those willing to learn. At the ski area, as he referred to it, he began lifelong friendships with those he met and and worked with and considered many of these friends as family. His passion for skiing led him to various locations throughout the world to hone his craft. John was proud to serve the country that became his own in the Army during the Vietnam War. He was grateful to those, in all branches of the armed services, who gave their service to the country he loved. John was married to Cheryl (Voss) on August 2, 1984 and they spent 33 well-loved years together. He is survived by his wife Cheryl (Voss), children Jana-Kristine Merlin (Helgesen) from his first marriage to Valentina Lane, Jon-Erik Helgesen and Kari Garcia (Helgesen), three grandchildren, Tristan, Teagan and Lily. Sister Turid Sinagra (Helgesen), brother Helge Helgesen, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father Fritz Helgesen and mother Aslaug Helgesen (Solos). A memorial visitation will be held Thursday May 31, 2018 from 4:00pm until time of service at 7:00 pm at Dieterle Memorial Home, 1120 S Broadway, Montgomery, IL 60538. John’s wishes to return to Norway will be fulfilled by his family. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be directed to the Seasons Hospice Foundation at www.seasonsfoundation.org/donate/, SkiDUCK at www.skiduck.org/donate/ or the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org/involved/donate.
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