Cover photo for Helen Adams's Obituary
1937 Helen 2021

Helen Adams

January 2, 1937 — July 13, 2021

Helen "Rowena" (Rowan) Adams passed from this world July 13th, 2021. She suffered a fatal heart attack. She was born January 2nd, 1937 in Powersville, Missouri to Raymond A. and Reva M. Kingingsmith Rowan. Rowena was born at her grandparents' home, Jessie and Harley Klinginsmith and she was named after her Aunt Helen Klinginsmith, her mother's sister, who was the next girl in line from Reva. Although formally Helen, she always went by Rowena. She was the second child of Raymond and Reva's, her brother, Philip A. Rowan, was born five years prior.

Rowena was an animal lover from a young age and appreciated life on the family farm where she could help in raising the sheep and cattle. She enjoyed tending to the orphan lambs and helping them thrive. She became a skilled young horsewoman and never lost her love for the riding. While growing up, she was always interested in running farm equipment and according to her brother Phil, she was naturally mechanically inclined. She worked alongside her dad and Phil during crop harvest. Her first "big girl" job at age nine, was running the horse powered hay lift used to stack hay. She was quite good at it and was hired by the neighbors to do the same work for them which made her proud to have her own spending money. As a teenager she often worked with her mother--assisting with her mom's wallpaper business. She also worked at the Putnam County Farmers Co-Op Market in Powersville throughout high school. Additionally, Rowena was musically talented and often sang for the congregation at the Powersville Methodist Church, accompanied by her mother on the piano.

Rowena attended grade school in Powersville and graduated from Unionville, Mo. High School. In the spring of 1955 Rowena took a road trip to Idaho, with her parents, to attend the wedding of her brother, Phil Rowan to Ellen Roberts in Midvale. That adventure turned out to be the start of her new life. At Phil’s wedding she met Glenn Harold Adams (deceased May 31st, 2017) who was working as an accomplished cowboy on the Upper Soulen Ranch, near Midvale. Her mid-west charm worked its magic on Glenn. They were married September 20, 1958.

Rowena and Glenn moved to Harpster, ID in the early 60's and put down roots. They built their family home overlooking the South Fork of the Clearwater River where they lived until their deaths. In 1965 their son Brett entered their lives and in 1970 Anjeleigh was added to the family. Glenn's niece, Kim Webster, came to live with the Adams’ in 1972 to attend high school at Clearwater Valley in Kooskia and quickly became and remained part of the family. Rowena’s love for her children and all children was legendary in the Harpster community. As time went by there were few things that brought her as much joy as being called “Mom” by people that appreciated her motherly advice and welcoming personality. Not only did Rowena love children and she knew no strangers. She absolutely adored animals. Her pets were not limited to cats and dogs but horses, chickens and even cows. They all enjoyed her kindness. She named one of her favorite cows "Sweet Tart" after all the candy she had fed it. Hard work was not something that Rowena shied away from. While Glenn was out earning a living as a logging truck driver, she would fire up the old Farmall tractor to cut and bale hay. She had been good at putting up the hay since age nine.

For a good number of years when her kids were young, evenings were often filled with square dancing. In between do-si-dos Rowena was always engaged in lively conversations. She was an accomplished seamstress and knitter. She taught a 4H knitting class and made fancy clothes for her children and nieces. She made a lot of dresses. She was an active Harpster Community member and engaged in the local church activities, Pollyanna Club, Ladies Bunco group and the Historical Harpster Schoolhouse Organization. For a time, she worked at Irwin Drug in Grangeville and in later years enjoyed flagging for road construction, which offered her lots of opportunities for conversation, as cars waited for her to turn the sign. Again, she knew no strangers.

Rowena is survived by her son Brett A. Adams, daughter Anjeleigh M. Adams Trefz (Larry Trefz), grand- daughter Mindiray Lamb, grandson Tristan Trefz, niece/foster daughter Kim Webster Walker (Steve Walker deceased). Kim Walker's kids; Brigette Axtel (RJ Axtel), Christina Walker, Jasun Walker (Ashley Walker). Brother Phil Rowan, aunt Fern Klingingsmith Valentine (whom she shared an especially close niece/aunt relationship). Glenns's Sisters; Minnie Ledington, Mary Shaw, Betty Bean, Merline Fowler and Ruth Cavasos (George Cavasos).

A grave-side service will be held at the Harpster Cemetery at 2:00pm August 21st. The main service will be held at 3:00pm at the Harpster Community Center (Historic School House) 115 Newsome Street, Harpster, ID 83549. Donations can be made in Rowena’s name to the Historic School House at the service or mailed to: Harpster Historical Schoolhouse, c/o N. Charley, 111 Harpster Drive, Harpster, ID 83552.
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