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Helen McGehee Frye

Helen McGehee Frye, 93, passed away Saturday, June 9, 2018, at Camellia Estates in McComb, MS, after a lengthy illness.

Helen McGehee met Harry Frye in English class, at Central High School in Jackson. She sat in front of him, he flipped her pretty, blonde hair, and they became known as The Constant Couple. They married in 1944, just before he went overseas to serve in WWII. He was 20; she was 19 years old.

Helen was born in 1924, in Clarksdale, MS, to Judge Harvey and Belle McGehee. The McGehees later lived in Columbia before moving to Jackson in 1940 when her father was appointed to the Mississippi Supreme Court, where he would serve as Chief Justice for many years.
As a young girl, Helen spent many summers at Camp Kittiwake in Pass Christian as a camper and later a counselor. She developed a love for sailing as well as archery.
Her older brother, Billy, was her idol, and she proudly followed his achievements throughout his life. She also adored Billy's wife, Brownie, and their entire family.

While Harry was overseas, Helen worked at the Mississippi Department of Health alongside her aunt Cleta. After Harry returned from the War, they both attended Millsaps College where Helen was a member of Phi Mu Sorority and also served on the International Relations Committee. Harry later graduated from Tulane Medical School, and the Fryes made their home in Magnolia. Harry served at Beacham Memorial his entire medical career, and they raised three children, Nancy, Betsy, and Charles, with the same sense of service and dedication to community.

Helen was a member of the Magnolia United Methodist Church where she taught Sunday School, Bible School, and served on various committees during earlier years.

She was an avid reader of numerous literary subjects. Her quest for knowledge continued throughout her life, and she instilled this quality in all of her family and loved ones.

From her mother, Belle, Helen inherited a remarkable sense of family and devotion to loved ones. Just as she wrote to Harry every day while he was in Europe, she was constant in her dedication to those she loved, and those she loved were many. She never forgot a birthday or an anniversary, never let an occasion go by without a letter or a phone call, including Christmas, when she sent hundreds of cards to friends and family every year. Even in her nineties she adopted an iPad to keep up by email and Facebook, never letting us forget for one moment how very much we were loved.

Helen grieved the loss of her daughter Betsy in 2012.

She is survived by her husband of 74 years, Dr. Harry C. Frye, Jr.; two children, daughter Nancy McElwee and husband, Jim; Charles Frye and his wife, Vicky; son-in-law, Neal Randall; three grandchildren, Elizabeth McElwee and husband, Steven, Brinson Wall and wife, Jacqueline and Mary Helen Wall; three great-grandchildren, Kaylea, Charles Johnson (C.J.)) and Hana Wall, and numerous nieces, nephews, and loved ones.

Visitation will be Wednesday at Magnolia United Methodist Church from 9:30am until Celebration of Life Service at 11am with Rev. Phil Gerber officiating. Burial will follow at Magnolia Cemetery under the direction of Sharkey Funeral Home in Summit.

Pallbearers are George Goza, Chip Leggett, Lem Mitchell, Ricky Coney, Bentley Spears, Dr. Luke Lampton and Emmitt Hennessey.

The family would like to thank the staff and nurses at Camellia Estates and also Georgia Cook for their compassionate care during her illness.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Magnolia United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 413, Magnolia, MS 39652 or PALS Rescue, 1017 Marks Road, McComb, MS 39648.

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Helen McGehee Frye
June 9, 2018





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