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Helen E Hafen
Helen E Hafen

Helen E Hafen, age 94, of Monroe, passed away peacefully September 26, 2022, at St Clare Friedensheim Assisted Living Facility where she has been a resident for the past two years.  Helen was born March 4th, 1928, in Monroe, the daughter of Ted and Myrna (Gingrich) Newman, Juda, WI.  She graduated from Juda High School, Class of 1945, then moved to Madison and attended Madison Business College.  Helen was united in marriage to William Hafen Jr. in 1949, starting their farming partnership on the farm where Helen grew up south of Juda.  Tragically in 1960, their son, John, was killed in a car accident in which both Helen and Bill were seriously injured.  Neighbors rallied until months later when they were able to resume farming. In 1976, after selling their dairy herd, they moved to a small farm on the state line.

Helen was the long-time Jefferson Township treasurer and knew all her neighbors, their children, and even their dogs.  She and Bill enjoyed golfing at Windy Acres where Helen played in the women’s league.  After Bill’s sudden death in 1991, Helen maintained the farm, caring for her “foster” sheep during the summer and plowing snow with her skid steer loader in the winter.  

At the age of 82, Helen moved to Monroe, making new friends playing Euchreama and learning to play bridge. She volunteered at St.Clare Hospital in Monroe and the National Historic Cheesemaking Center, where she proudly accepted the Seppi award as volunteer of the year in 2016. 

Helen was preceded in death by her husband, Bill, in 1991; her parents; son, John, in 1960; a sister, Rebecca, at birth; and brothers, Jim, and Myron, in the Korean Conflict.  Also a favorite cousin, Marilyn Miller, in 2016. 

She is survived by her daughter, Jill (Chuck) Roethe, Ridgeway, WI;  Grandson, Michael, Eagle, CO; granddaughter, Megan (Jim) Newman, Sussex, WI; and special great grandchildren, Natalie and Michael Newman. Sisters-in-law, Irene Slatter, Eileen (Jim) Rech, Kate (Ron) Shatek, Carol (Bill) St.John; brother-in-law, Bob Britt; and special niece, Laurie (Wayne) Segner.

Funeral services will be held on Monday, October 3, 2022, at 11:00 a.m., at the NEWCOMER FUNERAL HOME, Monroe, with Rev. Tiff Bates officiating. Interment will follow in Mt. Vernon Cemetery, Juda. Visitation will be at the funeral home on Monday, from 9:00 a.m. until the time of service. A memorial fund will be established in Helen’s name for the National Historic Cheesemaking Center. Condolences may be shared at

Mom, you have been a role model for 3 generations of women demonstrating strength, perseverance and independence.  A special thank you to the staff at Friedensheim for their loving care and concern especially in Mom’s last few days.