Helme, Roberta 9/11/1951 - 10/9/2016 Tavares, Florida Roberta Ann Helme, 65, passed away unexpectedly on Sunday morning, October 9, at Leesburg Regional Medical Center after a short battle with pneumonia. Born on September 11, 1951, Roberta, known affectionately as Bert by those close to her, lived in Tavares, Florida with her partner of 16 years, Steve Zeiler, who was at her side when she passed. She will join her beloved oldest son, Lanny, and her parents, Donald V. Helme and Mary Bernetta (O'Leary) Helme in heaven. She is survived by her three children, Stephanie, Erin and Jamie; her grandchildren Megan, Ryan, Skylar and Selecia; her sister Doris; her niece Kylah and nephew Bobby. She also leaves behind so many lovely friends and extended family from various parts of her life: her Lakeside, Etterman's and Muskegon Catholic Central friends from her youth spent in Muskegon, Michigan; her friends from many years spent raising, breeding and training horses in Ocala, Florida; the extended family she shared with Steve in the Baltimore, Maryland area; and all of her wonderful friends in the Tavares area. Bert loved collecting owls and salt and pepper shakers. She loved horses. She loved doing things for other people. She loved life. She was an eternal optimist, full of sunshine and tough as nails. She left this world on her own terms and spent several days prior to her passing with her children by her side, telling jokes and entertaining the ICU nursing staff right up to the very end. Her children wish to express a special thanks to the ICU nurses at Leesburg Regional Medical Center for the care of their mother in her final days. A private celebration of Bert's life will be held at a later date. For those wishing to honor Bert's life, her children request a donation to charitable organizations that are leading the fight against cancer and/or lung disease. Bert is deeply missed already but her huge spirit will live on forever.
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