Mava Helmick Mallette Johnson
August 21, 1937 – May 22, 2021
Hacker Valley, West Virginia
A woman of strength, kindness and thankfulness, with an unshakable faith, went home to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on May 22, 2021.
Mava was born on August 21, 1937, in Replete, West Virginia. Her loving parents were the late Arnold and Reva Boggs Helmick of Cleveland, W.Va. She was married to Raymond Mallette on August 29, 1959, until his passing in 1989. Mava later married Reverend James Johnson on March 26, 1993, until his passing in 1995.
Mava is survived by her two children, Dennis Ray Mallette of Hacker Valley, W.Va. and Deanna Gaddy (husband Robert) of Knightdale, N.C. Mava is also survived by one sister, Vera Helmick Jordon (husband Mike) of Cleveland, W.Va.
Mava attended the Beulah one room school in Replete, W.Va., and graduated from Webster Springs High School in 1955. She later attended classes at Fairmont State College where she earned certification in Occupational Health Safety and Food Service. Mava started her first job as a school teacher at the Vance one room school in Hacker Valley. She would sometimes walk two miles in the snow to get to the school, often with Dennis and Dee in tow.
After teaching for one year, mom decided that she would stay home and raise her children. When both children were in school, Mava began working as a teacher’s aide at Hacker Valley Elementary School. She later became the Cafeteria Manager until her retirement on September 1, 1997. Mava found great joy in talking with and serving the children as they made their way through the breakfast and lunch lines. The children especially loved her famous hot rolls. During the summer of 2020, she was asked by a community member for her famous hot rolls recipe.
Growing up, Mava was a member of Mt. Zion United Methodist Church in Replete, where her grandfather, Brown Helmick, was a charter member. She later attended Hacker Valley United Methodist Church, with her children. After they were grown, she returned to her beloved Mt. Zion and served as the church treasurer for several years.
Mava loved gardening and couldn’t wait until spring to see the flowers beginning to bloom and the vegetables becoming ripe. Watching and feeding the birds was also a favorite pastime. Hummingbirds were especially fun to watch as she would often have swarms of the tiny birds waiting to drink from her feeder.
Mava loved reading the newspaper and working the crossword puzzles. She always said that it helped to keep her mind sharp. Reading her morning devotional was a very important part of her life and a great way to begin the day. Mava loved to travel and greatly enjoyed visiting Jekyll Island, Ga. She also traveled to many beautiful destinations throughout the United States with her sister’s family.
Mava was diagnosed with Alzheimer ’s disease in 2017.
A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 27, 2021 at the Hacker Valley Cemetery, Hacker Valley, W.Va. with Chaplain Lauren Weaver officiating of WV Hospice of Buckhannon. Nephew Mark Mallette and Niece Debbie Carpenter will also share some thoughts.
Dennis and Dee express a great appreciation for those who have provided compassionate care throughout Mava’s illness. Of special note are Marion Bender, Lou Ellen Wentz, Denise Wright, Evelyn Pruitt, Lauren Weaver, Stephanie Lane, Jodi Washington, and Jessica Anderson. We also add a note of thanks to Linda Gum for sharing her love of birds and flowers with Mom, and more importantly her faith in Jesus Christ.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to WV Hospice of Buckhannon, 6 Hartman Plaza, Buckhannon, WV 26201.
Online condolences may be made to the family at www.polingstclair.com. Poling-St. Clair Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.