Mrs. Helen Lou Steele Wood, 83, of Mount Airy, passed peacefully on the evening of Thursday, March 16, 2023, to enter the gates of heaven. Helen was preceded in death by her husband, James “Bud” Wood; her parents, Thomas Edd and Leona Stanley Steele; and a brother, John Edward Steele. She is survived by her sister, Irene Steele Puckett of Mount Airy; her stepson, Todd Speight of Myrtle Beach, SC; her nieces, Karen Bremer (John) of Lithia, FL, Sharon Hiatt of Mount Airy, and Jan Blalock of Winston-Salem; her nephew, Eddie Puckett of Ararat, VA; many great and great-great nieces and nephews; as well as lifelong friends and the devoted staff of O’Dell’s Sandwich Shop. Helen was softhearted and strong-willed. She was always impeccably dressed, yet never afraid to throw on an apron and get to work in the O’Dell’s kitchen, where after retiring as an executive secretary at Renfro Corporation, she made a second career as a restauranteur. Helen worked hard because she also loved an adventure, especially if it included the bright lights and cha-ching of slot machines. Helen was an excellent cook, but delighted in dining out or a day full of shopping, and was quick to hit the road with her sister or her friends for a day – or a week – out of town. Helen requested no services be held and her life be honored through memories shared by family and friends. In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made in Helen’s name to the charity of your choice. Moody Funeral Services in Mount Airy is serving the family.