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Samuel Bowen Heltzel

Samuel Bowen Heltzel, 76, passed away on Thursday, July 22 at his home in Vicksburg. He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert Edgar and Mary Gray Heltzel, and brother, Robert Edgar Heltzel, Jr.

He is survived by his wife, Ann Frazer Heltzel, and children: Peter Heltzel (Sarah) of Gloucester, MA; Rachel Rankin (Darryl) of Vicksburg; Marjorie Steckler (Wesley) of Natchez; and Robert Heltzel of Atlanta, GA 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, VA in 1963 serving as Student Body President. He enrolled at 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 Class Agent for the VMI Alumni Association. Sam graduated in 1967 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering and was awarded a Master of Science Degree in Physical Oceanography from Old Dominion University in 1973.

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

After completing military service, Sam was employed as a Research Oceanographer by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at various stateside locations for 35 years. His last assignment was at the Coastal & Hydraulics Laboratory at Waterways Experiment Station in Vicksburg. He was a licensed Professional Engineer.

Sam was a faithful member of First Christian Church in Vicksburg where he served as an Elder 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 Ministries and was a longtime member of the cast of Gold in the Hills at the Vicksburg Theatre Guild.

Funeral services were held on Monday, July 26 at 11 a.m. at Fisher-Riles Funeral Home, 5000 Indiana Ave. Visitation was held on Sunday, July 25 from 1 until 3 p.m. and on Monday from 10 until 11 a.m. at the funeral home. The burial will be held in Orange, VA at a later date.

Memorials may 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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