Helen Tyson Muller
December 20, 1939 - December 19, 2017
After a long battle with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, Helen passed away peacefully in her sleep on Tuesday morning, December 19, 2017 with Werner by her side. She spent 46 years committed to, and engaged in, the community of Las Vegas, New Mexico; Most years living on a small ranch south east of Las Vegas on “the Mesa”.
Memories of Helen’s life abound in the hearts and minds of her family and friends. She was talented, independent, resourceful, generous and always optimistic.
She is survived by Werner Muller (her husband of 53 years), 3 children, Michelle Muller Wilkins (husband Jay Wilkins), Colette “Coco” Muller Lee (husband Christopher Lee) and Carlos Muller (wife Bethany Akers Muller) and 8 grandchildren (Madison Wilkins, Amani Rogers-Muller, Lane Wilkins, Hayden Lee, Claire Lee, Che Muller, Berit Wilkins, and Anya Muller.
Helen lived a life of commitment and service to multilingual and multicultural diversity. She spent her college summers working with the American Friends Service Committee in community development in Mexico and Lebanon. After college graduation, she spent two more years working for AFSC in Tanzania, East Africa, where she met Werner.
Helen loved languages. She spoke English, French, Swahili, Spanish, and German. She earned Masters degree in Social Studies Education at Columbia University’s Teachers College and an MA in Political Science at New Mexico Highlands University. At Columbia University, she worked her way through graduate school teaching Swahili to Peace Corps and teacher trainees for East Africa; she taught the first and only Swahili course at NMHU as part of the Ethnic Studies program in the early 1970s.
During her life in San Miguel County, Helen became a rancher and shared her talents as leader of the Blue Ribbon Wranglers 4-H club. She was a talented musician, a substitute teacher, an artist, photographer, journalist and became the Managing Editor of the Daily Las Vegas Optic for several years in the late1980s.
She was a devoted wife and parent.
She was humble, lived a life focused on the present and has moved “from time to eternity”. She often said she just wanted to “be”.
In her memory, we share an excerpt from the poem, “God of the Open Air”:
Let me once more have sight
Of the deep sky and the far-smiling land,
Then gently fall on sleep,
And breathe my body back to Nature’s care,
My spirit out to Thee, God of the Open Air.
-Henry Van Dyke
A private family service will be held at a later date .
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the :
American Friends Service Committee,
1501 Cherry Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19102.
The family of Helen Tyson Muller has entrusted the care of their beloved one to Avista Creamtion and Burial of Santa Fe. 1-505-438-2959 or www.avistacremationandburial.com