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Helen Campbell Born 100 Years Ago   Helen Talks to WSGS


WSGS marks the 100th birthday of Helen Campbell of Hazard - born on January 25th 1914.  She was a member of the Hazard High School team that won the State Basketball Tournament in 1930.  Helen had outlived all of her team mates when she died at the age of 93 in 2007.  At 5-foot-11, Campbell was the team's tallest member.  She played for Hazard coach Pat Payne, the only coach in Kentucky to win a state championship for both girls and boys. "He [Coach Payne] demanded a lot of hard work from us but he was good and truly liked by practically all," Campbell told WSGS in 2006.  After Hazard repeated as girls state champion in 1997, the 1930 team was treated to a new round of celebration, including a film and other festivities at Appleshop in Whitesburg.  During an interview with WSGS announcer - Dave Hammond asked Helen if she still thought of those glory days of 1930.  Campbell replied: "Absolutely, absolutely, good memories, real good memories."  She recalled that when the team came home with the state championship trophy in hand, "they had the fire truck and all like they usually do, and we all enjoyed it and were so thrilled."  The key to longevity, she told WSGS, was to: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart."  For many years, Campbell was the buyer for the women's department at Dawahares in Hazard.    The women's business club in Hazard once named her "Woman of the Year."  Helen Campbell also taught school for a time at the Cornett Hill Grade School.  Before joining Dawahares, she worked at Majors Department Store in Hazard. 

1930 Championship Team Photo



My Aunt Helen, indeed, was a sophisticated lady with a quiet dignity.  In title, she was my great aunt, but my brothers and my sister and I thought of her as a grandmother.  I felt privileged to call her a family member.  Jay Buckner, Berea, KY 

Helen was the kindest person I ever knew.  She never seemed to get angry with anyone.  I remember when she worked for Dawahares.  She was the buyer, along with Sadie Dawahare, for the women's clothing.  She seemed to have a knack for selecting clothing with certain people in mind that she felt would look just right on.  After Mr.Willie died, if Sadie wanted to go out to lunch or visit someone, Helen was always there to drive her.  She loved her church and the Lord.   Elizabeth S. Duncan, Hazard, KY

I never heard Helen say a bad word about anyone and I never heard anybody say anything bad about her.  Helen was just plain good.  She walked with the Lord here on Earth and she is with Him now.  When I think of good people I have known, Helen is right at the top.  Carlene Shackelford, Hazard, KY

Aunt Helen was the steward of Christianity.  I'm sure she was in the express lane to Heaven when she left us.  She never had an unkind word (even when the children were being naughty).  I was fortunate enough to know Aunt Helen for the last 12 years of her life, but those that were around her even a moment understood her graciousness, devotion to God, and her love for all.  I'm not sure I have ever met anyone in my life who loved people and God more than she did.  She was an inspiration to all she touched.  Phil Anderson  Powell, OH

My Aunt Helen was very special to me and my family. She raised my Dad and was like a Grandmother to me.  I've never known a better person. She had almost a regal presence to anyone who got to meet her. A funny story...when my sister and I were children, one of our friends said "I wish I had an Aunt Helen!"  She gave me a bible when I was a child.  She had written II Timothy 2:15 in the inside cover.  I remember reading it and I had to ask her what it meant. She said "You should work hard and always do whatever is right."  I miss her.  Greg Wells Danville, KY

I have so many memories of Helen Campbell but I guess the one that stands out is how much she doted on her elderly mother and aunt, Spicy.  She was always there for them while working at Dawahares for many years.  In fact, it is hard to say the word "Dawahares" without adding Helen Campbell.  Ida Lee Hansel, Spartanburg, SC

I rented the bottom apartment of her house in 1983-1984. Ray Byrant, Hazard, KY

I will always remember all the things she did to help 'raise me'.  She taught me to play the piano.  The recitals were so exciting.  I remember we dressed up and the family sat around the living room as Marty and I played our songs.  Helen always bought clothes for us.  I remember getting new clothes to take to church camp and was so excited.  She was always there for us.  What a role model!  There's nobody like my Aunt Helen!  How blessed I am that God put her in my life!  Kathy Campbell Simons, Denver, Colorado

I remember Helen as one of the sweetest ladies that I ever met.  She was good friends with my mother, Beulah Cooksey Cornett.  Betty Cornett Feagan, Lexington, KY

Helen and all of her kin folks, were a great part of my childhood - a pleasant part!  She was smart.  I wish I could have told her in person how much respect I had for her when I was a child.  She represented dignity and grace to me.  Jane Gregory Harris, San Diego, CA

Miss Helen was a great teacher too.  Will always remember my first grade teacher at Cornett Hill Grade School. Lee Dixon, Warner Robins, GA

I remember Helen as one of the nicest ladies I have ever met.  Mary Jo Gregory Edwards, Carmel, IN