Trula Helton Ensley's bodily life on earth ended on Tuesday, October 15, 2019, in Culpeper, Va. She was born on December 1, 1925, in Russell County to Elijah and Martha Comer Helton. Trula was the youngest of nine children. She and her siblings, who all preceded her in death, are now singing once again on the front porch with oldest brother, Jacob Helton, strumming his guitar. The rest of the Helton clan keeping the circle unbroken include sisters, Russell Helton Artrip, Bonnie Helton Merriman, Bessie Helton Martin and Kathleen Helton Baker; brothers, Roy Helton, William Helton and Paul Helton; half-brother, Benjamin Franklin Helton; and half-sisters: Rebecca Jane Helton Barton, Nora Kate Helton and Alta Helton Campbell.
October 15, 2019
Trula came to Fieldale following high school to care for her sisters' children. There she met Alvis Eugene ("Gene") Ensley whom she married in 1945 upon his return from serving in World War II.
Trula is survived by her son, Ralph Ensley (Jane) of Goldvein, Va.; and daughter, Martha Ensley Stokes (Steve) of Montpelier, Va. To continue her laughter and kindness in the world are granddaughter, Sara Ensley Brooks (Grant); two step-granddaughters, Ginny Crider Hauger (Steve), and Ashley Stokes along with two great-grandsons, Cael and Everett Brooks; and three stepgreat-grand-children, Jenna Hauger, Jack Hauger and Lily Cason-Stokes. Numerous very special nieces and nephews survive her and will carry forth the memory of their youngest aunt.
Trula's life-long dream was to be a nurse, but because of her family circumstances she was unable to fulfill that dream. After coming to Henry County, she worked in the Fieldale Hosiery Mill for seven years. She later worked at the DuPont plant in Martinsville for 25 years. Following the death of her husband in 1975, Trula decided to do something about her long-delayed dream. At age 50, she retired from DuPont and entered the Certified Nurse's Aide training program at Patrick Henry Community College. Following the training, she went to work in the Physical Therapy Department of the Memorial Hospital of Martinsville and Henry County. Trula spent almost 20 years in her second career, the one she had dreamed of as a young woman.
In addition to the love of her family and caring for others, Trula loved her church and displayed a strong Christian faith throughout her life. She leaves behind many dear friends at Fieldale United Methodist Church. Special appreciation is offered to the members of her church family who supported her faithful aging while she lived in Martinsville and Henry County and continued to love and visit her during her time in Culpeper.
Visitation will be held at Fieldale United Methodist Church at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, October 21, 2019 followed by a celebration of Trula's life beginning at 11:30 a.m. A graveside service will follow at Roselawn Memorial Park. Trula loved flowers, but often said she wanted them while she was living, not when she died. While flowers are welcome, if you prefer to honor Trula with a longer lasting donation please direct it to Fieldale United Methodist Church, 36 Patrick Avenue, Fieldale, VA 24089. Collins Funeral Home, 30 Riverside Drive, Bassett Va. is proudly serving the family. Online condolences are welcome at www.collinsmckeestonefuneralhome bassett.com.