Floral 15

Helen Kay Howard

November 20, 1934 ~ October 7, 2021 (age 86)


Helen Kay Bunnell Howard-Towne (1934-2021) passed away on October 7, 2021 surrounded by her family at Banner Gateway Medical Center in Gilbert, Arizona. 

Kay was born on November 20, 1934 in Provo, Utah to Karl Grover Bunnell and Helen Webster Bunnell. She was raised in a loving home in Lakeview and always remained close with her parents and siblings. 

Kay married Max Palfreyman in 1951 and they had three children, Terri, Mark and Steve. In 1959, Kay married Gary Howard and they had one son, Mike. The family moved to Huntington Beach, California in 1960 where they raised their family. Gary adopted Terri, Mark and Steve and the family was sealed together in the Los Angeles Temple in 1963.

Kay returned to school and graduated from Long Beach State University in Elementary Education. She later completed a Masters Degree in Computer Education. Kay taught elementary school in the Huntington Beach City School District, mostly 2nd grade, for 23 years.

In 1990, Kay lost her husband Gary to cancer. She retired from teaching in 1995 and began traveling the world with her friend, Marge, also a retired teacher. They took cruises to Europe, Asia, and Alaska. 

After being single for 10 years, Kay married Richard Towne. Together they served as missionaries in Kirtland, Ohio. Following their mission, they spent their remaining years together visiting each other’s children and grandchildren. Richard passed away in 2020.

Kay was an organizational expert, a gardener, an excellent seamstress, an avid fan of Yankees and Angels baseball and BYU football, a lover of dogs, lover of all cookies, maker of fudge for her friends and neighbors every Christmas, and was a FOX News junkie. Kay also had a deep love of many kinds of music. 

Family was everything to Kay. She never forgot the birthday of a child, grandchild or great-grandchild and attended every event she possibly could. She loved family gatherings and reunions more than anything.

As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Kay served faithfully in the Primary, Young Women’s and Relief Society organizations and as a temple worker. Whether at church or with her family, Kay was always serving and helping others.

Kay is preceded in death by Karl Grover Bunnell and Helen Webster Bunnell (parents), Gary Howard and Richard Towne (husbands), Laurel Howard (daughter-in-law), Renee Frazier (sister), Gary Bunnell (brother), and Isabelle Metheny (great-granddaughter).

Survivors include her brothers, Lee Bunnell (Carol) and Dan Bunnell, and sister-in-law Connie Bunnell; her children, Terri Wilson (Gaylord), Mark Howard, Steve Howard (Eileen), Mike Howard (Kylinn); 19 grandchildren, and 58 great-grand children. 


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Helen Kay Howard, please visit our floral store.


October 22, 2021

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Sts.
19191 17th Street
Huntington Beach, CA

Funeral Service
October 23, 2021

11:00 AM
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Sts.
19191 17th Street
Huntington Beach, CA


Pacific View Memorial Park
Pacific View Dr.
Corona Del Mar, CA 92625

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