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Cape woman among founding Phi Beta Chi sorority members awarded

Sunday, November 2, 2008

At the 30th anniversary celebration of the founding of Phi Beta Chi, a national Lutheran collegiate women's sorority, co-founders Mary Gerlach of Cape Girardeau and the late Bonnie Helfer of St. Louis received awards of excellence. Helfer's daughter, Barbara Wissman accepted the award on her behalf At the awards banquet, held in Frontenac, Mo., the Order of the Mantle was presented to the two women for their example of dedication to chapter, church and community. The sorority honored outstanding members with 12 other awards plus the Bonnie J. Helfer Associate of the Year award and the Mary J. Gerlach Active Member of the Year, given in honor of the two women whose vision was realized in founding the sorority. The Bonnie J. Helfer Associate of the Year and the Mary J. Gerlach Active Member of the Year awards are presented to sorority members who, as an associate or active member during the previous year, made the greatest individual contribution to the sorority.

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