Obituary for Mr. Helmut J. Hein
Helmut J. Hein, age 65, passed away on 23 March 2018. Helmut was born and raised in Rockford, Illinois, the son and brother of immigrants from Germany.
Helmut enlisted in the Army in 1973 and served in Special Forces as a light weapons sergeant in 10th, 7th, and 12th Groups, ultimately attaining the rank of First Sergeant. At the time of his death, Helmut was vice president of Chapter 59, Special Forces Association.
After leaving active duty, Helmut served as a police officer in Cherry Valley, Illinois. He eventually left the police department to work for the Department of the Army in the field of small arms training. Helmut was a tireless advocate for military marksmanship and a staunch supporter of the Army Reserve competitive shooting program. Combining these passions, he made significant and innovative improvements to the Army Reserve Small Arms Training Program.
Helmut was received into the Catholic Church in 1996 and became fully involved in the activities at St. Michael’s in Roswell, Georgia, serving as the chapel coordinator.
Helmut was preceded in death by his father Leo and is survived by his mother Lydia, older brother Walt, wife Linda, sons Collin and John, daughter-in-law Pam, and grandchildren Michael, Ryan, and Katie.
From Mike Campbell:
Helmut J. Hein, soldier and friend, left us on 23 March, due to an auto accident. With his passing, soldiers lost a passionate small arms combat readiness advocate.
As a Christian soldier, Helmut’s priorities were God, family, soldiers and small arms readiness. Following these priorities, he exemplified the Army values of Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage. His professional loyalty was always foremost to soldiers, even to the detriment of his health and career. With numerous accolades and achievements, his success in building small arms training programs that better prepared soldiers to survive and prevail on the battlefield, was his most valued.
A fitting tribute to Helmut is to try and live the admonition he often used to close correspondence;
“Be the kind of person that when you get up in the morning Satan groans. (do) not hate the man because of his vice, or love the vice because of the man.” St. Augustine, City of God, 14.6 “