Obituaries detail

Carol Beth Helter
Dec 18,1947---Oct 23,2017

Carol Beth Hetler, age 69, of Overland Park, Kansas, lost her fight with cancer on October 23, 2017 at Shawnee Mission Hospital.  Dr. Hetler was born December 18, 1947 in St. Joseph, Michigan, the eldest of four children of Harold and Anita (Zerler) Hetler.


After graduating from Lakeshore High School in Stevensville, Michigan, in 1966 she attended the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor receiving her bachelor’s degree in general studies. She then attended George Washington University where she achieved a master’s degree in Anthropology and shortly thereafter received her second master’s degree in Demography from Georgetown University. She was awarded her doctorate in Demography from Australian National University in 1987.


Carol spent her career working in Southeast Asia and the south Pacific on humanitarian community & social development initiatives spanning the areas of health, sanitation, gender inequality, HIV/drug addiction, neo-natal health and many more. She designed, managed and evaluated the demographic and sociographic impacts working on projects in partnership with NGOs and governments, for programs funded by UNICEF, USAID, Global Fund, the Ford foundation.


Smart, creative, free-spirited, energetic and an adventurer, Carol was also known for her love of animals. She was a champion to all creatures in need and never turned away from a challenge. She loved creating and was curious about the world. She was talented at many things, including writing, weaving, crocheting, beadwork, painting and cooking. She entertained her family and friends with wonderful letters of her adventures, and during her last few years she found new fans of her stories hanging with friends at Homers.


Upon retirement Carol returned to the States to be closer to family and settled in Overland Park, Kansas. For the last five years Carol valiantly fought metastatic breast cancer that ultimately took her life. She continued to be creative and as active as her health would permit, finding a new passion in creating beautiful and intricately designed beaded and crocheted crafts. She will be missed by all who knew her.


Carol was preceded in death by her father, Harold Hetler. She is survived by her mother, Anita Hetler of Tavares, Florida, brother Dale Hetler (Galen Harris), also of Tavares, brother Craig Hetler (Diane Lammers) of Overland Park, Kansas, sister Donna Lou Hetler (Richard Newman) of Green Valley, Arizona, and nephew Harrison Hetler of Lawrence, KS. She also touched the lives of so many more, especially her adopted family in Indonesia, including Novan and Nancy.


The family would like to thank the team at the KU Cancer Center and Shawnee Mission Hospital who cared for her during her cancer battle.


Memorial services will be private and at a later date. 


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