Gordon and Peggy Helms retire after 72 years of combined service

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After 72+ years combined service, Majors Gordon and Peggy Helms retired on October 31, 2001. They are not taking it easy, yet; they will continue in their present appointment in pastoral care until June 2002.

Gordon was born in Riverside, CA to officer/soldier parents and grew up in Santa Monica, where he soldiered at the Santa Monica Corps. He attended Pacific Bible College (now Azusa University) and joined the US Air Force in 1956.

Margaret (Peggy) Farnsworth was born in Warren, PA. Her family moved to Pasadena, CA, where Peggy was a soldier at the Pasadena Corps. She and Gordon wed in 1958.

For two years, they lived in Montana, where Gordon served in the Air Force. After his honorable discharge, they moved back to Santa Monica.

Gordon had long felt the call to officership, but it wasn’t until one Sunday when Peggy attended the corps alone that she found herself at the altar, answering the call to officership.

The Helms family, now including two sons, Paul and Drew, left for training school in San Francisco, CA. They joined the Proclaimers of the Faith Session. While still cadets, they received their first appointment to Pendleton, OR. After they were commissioned in 1965 they returned to Pendleton, where their third son, Derek, was born.

Their corps appointments included Caldwell, ID, where their fourth son, Craig, was born, Phoenix (AZ) Citadel, Oakland (CA) Citadel, and Tacoma (WA) Citadel. They also served at Northwest DHQ as divisional youth leaders (DYS and DGD), at the School for Officers’ Training, and at DHQ in San Francisco as divisional secretary and with divisional services to the aging.

In 1996 when their son Lt. Drew Helms was promoted to Glory, the Helms were appointed to Hayward, CA, where Peggy joined Lt. Nancy Helms as associate officer and Gordon served at Del Oro DHQ.

Their final appointment in the pastoral care department has been one of their most fulfilling.

The retirement service was held at the Torrance Corps with Major Linda Markiewicz officiating. Commissioners David and Doreen Edwards presented the certificates of retirement. Edwards remarked on their capacity for unconditional love, saying, “These are two people who are full of love.”

Effective December 10, their retirement address will be 4806 Remington Park Dr., Bakersfield CA 93312.

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