Jane Timberlake Helwig


Dr. Jane Timberlake Helwig, 73, of Charlotte, N.C., died Monday, March 29, 2021, of pancreatic cancer in Charlotte. She was born Aug. 27, 1947, in Charlottesville, Va., daughter of the late Margaret Mish Timberlake and Stephen Davis Timberlake IV, of Staunton, Va. She is survived by her cherished family: husband of 45 years, Richard A. Helwig, of Charlotte; brother, Stephen Davis Timberlake V, of Monterey, Va.; daughters, Mariana Minton Harriss (Daryl Weathersbee), of Nashville, N.C., and Caroline Helwig Dudley (Daniel), of Charlotte; sons, Mark Richard Helwig (Linda), of Raleigh, N.C., David Wilson Helwig (Andrew Odom), of Durham, N.C., Christopher Mason Helwig (Mary), of Alpharetta, Ga., and Captain Adam Anderson Helwig, USMC, (Kate Zarzar), of Wilmington, N.C.; granddaughters, Kristine Ellen Helwig, of Apex, N.C., and Grayson Sophia Dudley, of Charlotte; grandsons, Jeffrey Wayne Horton, of Chapel Hill, N.C., Harrison Mark Helwig, of Apex, Robert William Harriss of Boston, Davis Benjamin Dudley, William Andrews Dudley, and Augustus John Dudley, all of Charlotte, and Luke Mason Helwig, of Alpharetta.

Jane graduated from Stuart Hall in Staunton, and received a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1970. She programmed mainframe computers in Richmond, then returned to Chapel Hill and worked for UNC-CH helping computer users. She was a co-founder of SAS Institute Inc., of Cary, N.C., leaving that company in 1981. With her husband she then co-founded a computer consulting firm so they could work from home while the younger children were small.

In 1988 Jane began medical school at UNC-CH, receiving her M.D. with honors in 1992. The family moved to San Francisco for Jane’s residency at University of California, San Francisco, in obstetrics and gynecology. She spent the next 19 years practicing on the Eastern Shore of Virginia and in Lancaster, S.C. Her favorite job of all was after retirement, as nanny for grandtwins Will and Gus.

Jane loved music of all kinds and sang in the choir at Christ Church in Lancaster, S.C. She was happiest outdoors in all weathers and hiked 300 miles of the Appalachian Trail solo. Reading, knitting, and eating (and thus cooking) were daily satisfactions. Her greatest pleasure was her family, especially at the beach.

A memorial celebration is planned when it will be safe. Jane’s ashes will be buried in Thornrose Cemetery, Staunton.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Jane’s name may be made to Wounded Warriors Project; Loaves & Fishes of Mecklenburg County; or Doctors without Borders.
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