Winston-Salem, Helen Plott Luckadoo, age 98, passed away on Monday, March 28, 2022, at Brookridge Baptist Retirement Community.
Helen was born in Waynesville to Grover Cleveland (Cody) Plott and Pauline McCracken Plott on April 18, 1923. Helen and her twin brother, Haywood, were the youngest of Cody’s and Pauline’s six children. Helen spent all of her childhood on Hazel Street in Waynesville. She graduated from WTHS where she was a cheerleader, a member of the track team, and an outstanding basketball player.
Wanting to do her part during World War II, Helen enlisted in the US Navy WAVES, serving for three years, 1944-1947. After basic training, she was selected to attend the Navy Hospital Corps School at Bethesda Navy Hospital in Maryland. As Helen had hoped to attend nursing school immediately after high school, she was thrilled with this opportunity. After graduation as a Corps WAVE, she was assigned to the US Naval Hospital in Parris Island, SC. Two years later she was transferred to the US Naval Hospital in Charleston, SC. In both assignments, she cared for servicemen wounded in WWII, as well as for their dependents needing medical care. Also, during her Navy years, she was selected to join the Navy women’s basketball team. Since all the other members of the team were women Marines, she was proud to represent the Navy.
While serving in Charleston, Helen met her future husband, USMC SSgt. James B. “Lucky” Luckadoo. He had recently returned from the Pacific and was serving as a Drill Instructor at Parris Island. Helen and Lucky were married on Valentine’s Day, 1948. As Lucky continued his military career, Helen followed to South Carolina, Waynesville (while Lucky was in Korea), Michigan, and North Carolina for several different tours of duty. Their daughter, Paula was born in Parris Island; daughter, Laine, in Jacksonville, NC; and son, Bobby, in Riverview, MI.
Helen returned to Waynesville in 1977, following Lucky’s death. Although she had lived elsewhere for more than 25 years, she soon reconnected with childhood friends and made new ones. After joining the Haywood Road Runners Club, she rediscovered her love of running and was blessed with many life-long friendships. Helen was employed for several years at Clyde Savings and Loan and then at Apple Realty. She was a faithful member of First Baptist Church of Waynesville and the Sunday School class taught by Don and Jeff Norris. Devoted to her monthly Bunco Bunch and her Saturday morning walking group, she was also an enthusiastic RummiKub player.
In 2013, Helen moved to Winston-Salem to be closer to family. Surprising no one, she adapted quickly to Independent-Living at Brookridge Baptist Retirement Community, where she found yet another group of new friends. Group outings, jigsaw puzzles, Bingo, and Rummikub filled her days until she was admitted to the nursing care unit at Brookridge in December 2020.
In addition to her parents and husband, Helen was predeceased by her siblings: Robert Plott, twin Haywood Plott, Anna Jean Plott Battle, Mary Pauline Plott Rhinehart, and Josephine Plott Raione; and their spouses: Ruth Plott, Wayne Battle, and Charles Rhinehart. Also, Helen was preceded in death by her children Laine Luckadoo and Bobby Luckadoo.
Surviving Helen are daughter Paula Thomas, and son-in-law Wayne Thomas; grandchildren Sarah Thomas Williams, Alex Thomas (Alisa), all of Winston-Salem, and Brett Luckadoo; as well as six great-grandchildren, Gabriel, Micah, Samantha and Mia Thomas, and Reece and Caroline Williams.
Helen is also survived by nieces and nephews Wayne Battle (Gay), Betsy Battle Arumi, Mary Jo Underhill, Carol Plott Horne, Cody Plott (Becky), Deborah Plott Masotti (John), Jonathan Plott (Diane), and David Plott (Judi).
A private, family graveside service will be held at 1:30 on Tuesday, April 19, followed at 2:30 by a casual friends and family memorial reception at the Wells Events & Reception Center.
Memorial gifts may be directed to an organization of the donor’s choice. Those interested in donating a tree or outdoor bench to the City of Waynesville in memory of Helen may contact Julie Grasty, Public Service department at 828-456-3706
The care of Mrs. Luckadoo has been entrusted to Wells Funeral Home of Waynesville.