US Navy


Grace Didan

April 15, 1924 ~ January 5, 2019 (age 94)

Grace Marie (Helberg) Didan 94, loving wife of Rushid Didan Sr.(deceased) of Manchester, CT departed this life peacefully on January 5, 2019 at Manchester Manor surrounded by her family. She will be greatly missed. Predeceased by her husband, daughter Kathleen Nowak, and son Edward Didan, she leaves behind her oldest son Rushid Jr. of Manchester, CT., three grandchildren; Elizabeth Grace Pelletier of Manchester CT., Sarah Nowak of Venice Beach, CA, and William Nowak of Mountain View, CA as well as four great grandchildren; Logan and Grace Pelletier, plus Clara and Iris Majumdar! Grace Marie was born April 15, 1924 on a beautiful hilltop farm in Andover, VT to Edgar and Alice (Tayton) Helberg. She was the youngest of four children Muriel, Henry, and Paul (twin). Along with her older sister Muriel they maintained the ice and hay farm as her father and two brothers served the war effort. She enlisted in the US Navy "Waves" in December 1944 and served as Supplies Storekeeper SK3c at the Headquarters 9ND in Great Lakes Illinois. After the war, the farm was sold and the reunited family settled in the Springfield Mass area. There, Grace met Rushid at an area barn dance and were soon married. They settled in Manchester, CT in 1951 buying their first and only home and the family was raised. In 1952 Grace left the Hartford, CT IRS and started her career at Pratt and Whitney Aircraft in the East Hartford secretary pool. Attending college part time evenings she earned her Bachelors of Business degree from Central Connecticut University. Working her way up to Senior Inspector in the East Hartford Navy Contract Office, she retired in 1987 after 35 years. Her favorite hobbies included spending time with her grandchildren, sewing, gardening, cooking and canning, travel, singing in the North United Methodist Church choir, and donating her "spare" time to many local charities. The Didan family would like to thank the nurses and staff of Masonic Care Hospice and Manchester Manor for their kind and compassionate care. Funeral services and burial in East Cemetery, Manchester will be private. There are no calling hours. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to North United Methodist Church, 300 Parker St. Manchester, CT 06040 or to Masonicare Hospice, 111 Founders Plaza, Suite 200, East Hartford, CT 06108. Holmes-Watkins Funeral Home, Manchester has care of the arrangements. To leave an online condolence please visit

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