Samuel Bowen Heltzel – The Vicksburg Post


Samuel Bowen Heltzel, 76, died Thursday, July 22 at his home in Vicksburg. He was predeceased by his parents, Robert Edgar and Mary Gray Heltzel, and his brother, Robert Edgar Heltzel, Jr.

He is survived by his wife, Ann Frazer Heltzel, and children: Peter Heltzel (Sarah) of Gloucester, Mass .; Rachel Rankin (Darryl) of Vicksburg; Marjorie Steckler (Wesley) of Natchez; and Robert Heltzel of Atlanta, Georgia and three grandsons: Grayson and John Robert Rankin and Tristan Heltzel.

Sam was an Eagle Scout and graduated from John Handley High School in Winchester, Virginia in 1963 as student body president. He enrolled at the Virginia Military Institute where he was a member of the wrestling and track teams. He was elected class historian and served on the executive committee and later served as a class officer for the VMI alumni association. Sam received a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1967 and a Master of Science in Physical Oceanography from Old Dominion University in 1973.

After graduating from VMI, Sam married Ann Eustace Frazer, a marriage lasting 53 years. Together, they raised their families in Okinawa, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and Mississippi. Sam served his country with distinction for three years during the Vietnam War. He was an air defense artillery officer, reaching the rank of captain.

After completing his military service, Sam was employed as a research oceanographer by the US Army Corps of Engineers at various locations in the United States for 35 years. His last assignment was at the Coastal & Hydraulics Laboratory at the Waterways Experiment Station in Vicksburg. He was a licensed professional engineer.

Sam was a staunch member of First Christian Church in Vicksburg, where he served as a past and chairman of the board. Sam was also a member of the Vicksburg Lions Club, Army Navy Club, and TRIAD. He volunteered with the local Food Pantry and Keystone departments and was a longtime cast member of Gold in the Hills at the Vicksburg Theater Guild.

The funeral will be on Monday, July 26 at 11 a.m. at the Fisher-Riles Funeral Home, 5000 Indiana Ave. A visitation will take place on Sunday, July 25 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and Monday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the funeral home. The funeral will be held in Orange, Virginia at a later date.

Briefs can be sent to: First Christian Church 3005 Porters Chapel Road, Vicksburg, Mississippi 39180 or Macedonia Christian Church 24077 Lahore Road Orange, Virginia 22960

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