Harlyn O. Hellem, age 86, was born in Dell Rapids, SD and grew up on a rural farm in South Dakota. He graduated from Jasper High School in 1953, and then attended South Dakota State for two years where he studied agriculture. He helped his father on the family farm for a year and then moved to Whittier, California. In 1957, Harlyn was drafted into the US Army and had overseas duty in Yokohama, Japan. Following his military service, he returned home and farmed with his father for a number of years. In 1965, Harlyn moved to St. Paul, Minnesota where he was in plant management training for Gould-National Batteries Co. and was later transferred to Chicago Heights, IL. He left Gould in 1966 to work in the machine division of Allis-Chalmers in Harvey, IL. He worked on various machines, including engine parts, mainly flywheels. In 1968, he became a salesperson for Lutheran Brotherhood Insurance. He sold annuities, mutual funds, health and life insurance with LB (presently known as Thrivent) until 1986. Harlyn brokered insurance until he retired in 2000.
Harlyn met his wife Linda while working for Gould National Batteries Co. They married on March 30, 1968 and lived in Harvey, IL. After the birth of their first child, Kenyon, they moved to Hazel Crest, IL. Two years later, their second child, Heather, was born. They lived in Hazel Crest for 48 years and moved to Orland Park in 2020. Harlyn was a practicing Lutheran and faithful Christian his entire life. Faith, friends and family were the focus and joys of his life. He and Linda were members of First Lutheran Church in Harvey, IL for 40 years. They are current members of Zion Lutheran Church in Tinley Park.
Harlyn is survived by his wife Linda nee Garza of 53 years, son Kenyon (Adriana) Hellem, and daughter Heather (Brian) Martello. Grandfather to Jacob Ponto, Matthew Hellem, Mitchell Martello, Joseph Martello, and Juliana Hellem. Great-grandfather to Caleb Hellem. Son of the late Clara nee Quissell and Olaf Hellem. Brother of Donald Hellem and the late Charles Hellem. Brother-in-law, uncle and friend to many. Wake at Maher Funeral Home, 17101 71st Ave, Tinley Park on Tuesday, November 16, 2021 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM. Funeral service and luncheon at Zion Lutheran Church, 17100 69th Ave., Tinley Park on Wednesday, November 17, 2021 at 11:00 AM. Interment at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL on Thursday, November 18, 2021 at 12:30 PM.
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