Helen's Story

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Helen (Diane) Cvitanovich was born in Rusk, , on Jan. 2, 1951, to Louis and Helen Vaughn.
She was the oldest of three children. Diane and her siblings grew up in Waco where her father was stationed at Connelly Field. Diane was 12 when her father passed, and her mom raised three wonderful children as a single parent. Diane got her sweetness from her loving mother.
Diane graduated from Connelly High School in Waco in 1969. After high school she enrolled at East Texas State University where she was a drama major as well an Air Force ROTC cadet.
She met her future husband, Buddy, in college. She enlisted in the Air Force in 1975 and served for five and a half years as a telecommunications operator on assignments in Ohio and Alaska. Diane and Buddy were married in Waco in 1976.
From Alaska, Diane and Buddy moved to Florida where she finished her college degree in accounting at Troy State. On May 25, 1983, Diane became a mom to a beautiful boy, Matthew James. He was the light of her life. For the next 11 years, she lived in San Antonio; Washington, DC; O'Fallon, Ill.; and finally Fort Walton Beach, Fla.
She was a homemaker and worked in various financial and administrative positions to help support her family. In 1994, Buddy retired from the Air Force; the family moved to Coppell to be closer to family.
Diane worked in HR departments as her son finished high school and college.
In 2004, Diane took off with Buddy for the adventure of a lifetime. They traveled to Canada and Alaska as well as to 37 other states in their fifth wheel trailer for the next few years. In 2009 the couple settled in Sherman.
In 2010, Diane became a mother-in-law when her son married Heather, the love of his life. In 2016, Diane became a grandmother when Matt and Heather blessed her with Ezra.
Despite a lengthy illness that began in 2010, no amount of pain or discomfort ever interfered with Diane's love and devotion to her family. Diane's illness grew steadily worse from 2010 until it claimed her life on Feb. 19, 2017.
Diane is survived by her husband, Buddy; her son, Matt and wife Heather, and their son Ezra; one sister, Donna Carlisle and husband Jimmy from Hewitt, Texas; and one brother, James who lives in Quantico, Va.
She is also survived by an extended loving family that includes Barb and Ray Khirallah, Pat Cvitanovich, Susan and Sal LoCoco, Janet Ball, 15 nieces and nephews, and eight grandnieces and nephews.
Her funeral service will be at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28, at Saint Mary's Catholic Church in Sherman.
In lieu of flowers the family request donations be made to Hope Mommies Dallas Chapter at HopeMommies.org or Home Hospice of Grayson, Fannin and Cooke counties at www.HomeHospice.org.
The online register may be signed at www.waldofuneralhome.com.
Published on February 27, 2017
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