City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremation

Helen Yvanovich Borden

Raleigh, North Carolina

Age 98.
Died 09/10/2023.

Helen Yvanovich Borden
On September 10, 2023, Helen Yvanovich Borden passed away peacefully at the age of 98 after a brief illness, at the home of her daughter Virginia Shene in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Helen was born on February 17, 1925 in Hong Kong to the late Vincente and Pureza Yvanovich.  She and her three sisters and two brothers were raised in Hong Kong and Macau.  After Hong Kong surrendered to the Japanese army during WW II, the entire family escaped to Macau for the remainder of the war.  After the war, Helen embarked on a successful career that ultimately led to her becoming an executive secretary at Pan American World Airways.  While working at Pan Am, Helen went on a trip around the world by herself.  While this might seem commonplace now, it was an adventurous undertaking for a single woman in the 1950s.

Helen met the love of her life, Windsor “Duke” Borden, at a cocktail party when Duke was stationed in Hong Kong while serving in the US Foreign Service.  They were married in Oswego, NY and moved to Fair Haven, NY in 1958.

Helen left her secretarial career to raise her three children.  It was usual at that time for women to stay home with the children while their husbands worked. But even by the standards of the era, Helen was an exceptional wife and mother. She cared deeply for her family and neighbors. She did this not out of obligation, but because of her true nature. She was always the first to offer help. She always ensured that every child who crossed her threshold was safe, healthy, and happy.  Helen’s faith was important to her.  Helen was a member of St. Thomas Church, Red Creek, NY.  She was a devout Catholic who served the church as a religious educator and as a Eucharistic Minister.

Helping to raise funds for charity was important to Helen.  Prior to the advent of the internet and social media, Helen and others would walk door to door asking for donations to the March of Dimes and other charities, as well as making baked goods and then selling them.

Helen had mad skills.  She was a superb seamstress and was accomplished at both knitting and crocheting.  Her daughters benefited from their mother’s skills as they had dresses tailor made for them, as well as intricately beautiful Icelandic and Irish Fisherman sweaters.  Helen also learned how to wallpaper, to refinish furniture, and to repair vacuum cleaners and computers.  There was literally nothing Helen couldn’t accomplish once she made up her mind to do it.

Helen was predeceased by her loving husband Duke Borden.  She is survived by her sister Cecilia Burroughs, her daughter Teresa Howell, son John (Kim) Borden, daughter Virginia (Paul) Shene, a grandson Aidan Shene, and many nieces and nephews.

She will be deeply missed by all. A private family celebration of her life will be held.
If desired, contributions may be made to the Fair Haven Fire Department, 14447 Fair Haven Rd, Sterling, NY 13156.

For additional information or for service details, please reach out to the family directly.

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City of Oaks Cremation and Funeral Home is a full-service funeral home in Raleigh, serving all of North Carolina and beyond. We provide an alternative to costly funeral homes and every day we help families in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and all over North Carolina make simple, affordable funeral arrangements.

Simply having to reach out to a funeral home can feel overwhelming. Our goal is to simplify the entire funeral home experience and make the process as easy as possible. We hope to eliminate any unnecessary surprises by publishing our total cost and the services we provide directly on our website. All of our obituaries are provided free of charge as a way to help families celebrate and commemorate the lives of their loved ones.

Our Promise

Apples to Apples

Just like all other licensed funeral homes in North Carolina, City of Oaks Cremation, LLC is regulated by the NC Board of Funeral Service.

The same laws that apply to the big corporate funeral homes also apply to the modest independently owned firms like ours. All crematories in North Carolina, regardless of who owns them, are inspected annually by the state and must adhere to the same rules and laws.

Genuine Care

We're committed to providing families within our community unsurpassed service before, during and after the time of loss.

Our staff will provide clear communication to your family through each step as we move forward from the original phone call notifying us of a death to the time we deliver the urn back to your family. We will treat your family with the utmost respect, as we honor the wishes of your loved one.

We promise to make this process affordable and as endurable as possible.

State Wide

Our Funeral Home is located in Wake County NC; however, we provide our services to families throughout the entire State.

Unlike other funeral homes, we don't charge an additional mileage fee. Regardless of what county you live in, we can help your family with making simple, affordable funeral arrangements. From Asheville to Wilmington, we're proud to help families statewide.

Our Services

Direct Cremation


Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. We include everything you need for a simple or direct cremation. Simple, affordable and reliable. We have not changed the cost of our direct cremation service since we opened City of Oaks in 2012.

Cremation with Solidified Remains


We offer the option of choosing how you receive your loved ones remains. Selecting our Direct Cremation with Solidified Remains option is a beautiful way to transform cremated remains into 40-60 “stones” that you can hold.

Cremation with Visitation


City of Oaks Funeral Home and Cremation provides an affordable cremation option with onsite visitation. Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. Simple, affordable and reliable.

Immediate Burial


An immediate burial has the same end result as a traditional burial; however, we have eliminated the extra (sometimes unnecessary) services prior to getting to the cemetery. Not everyone wants an open casket for viewing or a limousine for the family. Despite the term immediate, we can move as fast as you need or as slow as you like. This option simply allows you to save money by eliminating some of the fancy extras at the funeral home.

Traditional Funeral


We offer the same traditional funeral services as the big corporately owned funeral homes in the area; however, we cost about half the amount. You might consider a traditional funeral service if your family is looking for an open casket visitation, a traditional church service or a funeral service in the funeral home's chapel. A traditional funeral service can be altered to fit the needs of your family.

Green Burial


This establishment is one of a select number of funeral homes who meet the criteria for providing green funeral service by the Green Burial Council; a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization working to encourage environmentally sustainability in the field of funeral service. Our Green options allow for a funeral to take place without the use of toxic and non-biodegradable materials/chemicals.



As an alternative to traditional cremation, City of Oaks Funeral Home also offers Aquamation. The Aquamation process, often referred to as alkaline hydrolysis, uses a solution of water and potassium hydroxide to facilitate natural decomposition.

City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremations