Cover photo for Helen  Rose  Kanter's Obituary
Helen  Rose  Kanter Profile Photo
1942 Helen 2020

Helen Rose Kanter

January 12, 1942 — August 25, 2020

Helen Rose Kanter, 78, Indianapolis, passed away August 25, 2020. Helen was born January 12, 1942, in Knottsville, Kentucky, to the late James Celeste and Lettie Mae (Aud) Payne.

Helen went to school at St. Williams in Knottsville and furthered her education at Brescia University in Owensboro. She spent several years as a contemplative nun with the order of Mt. St. Joseph while she began a long teaching career. After moving to Indianapolis with her sister, she taught at Little Flower, Our Lady of the Greenwood, and for 35 years at St. Barnabas (4th and 5th grades). Helen was a member of St. Barnabas Catholic Church, where she was active with the Small Church Group, as well as a volunteer with Hunger Inc. Food Pantry. Above all, she was strongly devoted to her family. She was an ever present grandmother to Benjamin and Luke – never missing a sporting event. She will be fondly remembered for her caring nature, independence, selflessness, and love for family.

In addition to her parents, Helen was preceded in death by her first husband, Stephen Whitcomb; her second husband, Phillip Kanter; step-daughter, Cindy Beck; brothers, James C. "J.C.", Bernard J. “Junie”, Joseph S. "Johnny", Joseph E., Richard E. "Gene", and Larry Dennis, and sisters Elsie M. "Sissy", Dorthy M., Clara R., and Marjorie A. "Margie".

Survivors include her two sons, James Kanter (Julie Butler) and Robert Kanter (Beth); step-daughter, Vickie Hyatt; brother, Martin “Wishie” Payne; grandchildren, Benjamin and Luke Kanter, Marlo McCracken, and Kala Gregory.

Visitation will be on Monday, August 31, 2020, 4 to 8 p.m., at the O’Riley Funeral Home, 6107 S. East Street, Indianapolis. The Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 10:30 a.m., Tuesday, September 1, 2020, in St. Barnabas Catholic Church, with burial following at Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Barnabas Catholic School, Bishop Simon Brute Seminary, or Hunger Inc. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. Additionally, the Mass will be live streamed for those who cannot attend in person at Visit to share a favorite memory or to sign the online guest registry.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Helen Rose Kanter, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, August 31, 2020

4:00 - 8:00pm (Eastern time)

O'Riley - Branson Funeral Service & Crematory

6107 S. East St, Indianapolis, IN 46227

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass of Christian Burial

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Starts at 10:30am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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