Past ANA V.P. Helen Carmody-Lebo dies

January 3, 2001 By ekr

Past ANA V.P. Helen Carmody-Lebo dies

Helen Carmody-Lebo, immediate past vice president of the American Numismatic Association (ANA), died in an apartment fire today in Huntington Beach, California. Her husband, Jerry Lebo, was at their other home in Indiana at the time of the fire. Arrangements for a memorial service are pending.

“The numismatic hobby and the ANA lost a great friend today,” says ANA President H. Robert Campbell. “To know anything about this hobby and its spirit is to know Helen and what she did for us all. On behalf of the 30,000 members of the ANA, I express our deepest condolences to Jerry, Helen’s mother and her brother. She was a loyal friend to everyone and will be remembered always.”

Carmody-Lebo, 62, was first elected to the ANA Board of Governors in 1993 and served three terms before being elected vice president in 1999. Last August, Carmody-Lebo stepped down from the Board, citing health reasons. According to friends, her health was improving and she was beginning to resume some of her activities.

Joining the ANA in 1983, Carmody-Lebo was Life Member 3170. Her formal introduction to numismatics was through her first husband, Don Carmody, an active and gregarious coin dealer. He died on October 2, 1994. She was a founding member of the Society of U.S. Commemorative Coins; she served the latter as president and editor of its award-winning journal, The Commemorative Trail.

Carmody-Lebo was involved in many facets of the hobby, holding membership in more than 20 national, regional and California State organizations. She was a life member of the Florida United Numismatists, Central States Numismatic Society and the Society of International Numismatics. She also served as a judge for the Numismatic Literary Guild and was an acknowledged authority on U.S. Commemorative coins, on which she writing a book. For many years, she was a familiar sight at the Long Beach Coin and Stamp Expo, helping collectors and dealers at the information desk.

An ANA regional coordinator for many years, Carmody-Lebo was the first recipient of the Association’s Outstanding Regional Coordinator award for her service in that area in 1994. She received the ANA’s Glenn Smedley Memorial Award in 1990 and the Association’s second highest honor, the Medal of Merit, in 1991. That same year, she was named a Numismatic Ambassador by the weekly hobby publication Numismatic News.

In 1987 and 1988, Carmody-Lebo struck United States Constitution and Olympic commemorative coins at the United States Mint in Philadelphia. She took an active interest in the design of the California commemorative quarter, which will be issued in 2005 as part of the Mint’s 50 State Quartersâ„¢ Program.

Born in Connecticut in February 1938, Carmody-Lebo graduated from Naugatuck High School, where she was a member of the National Honor Society, and from the Katharine Gibbs School. She then attended the University of Connecticut and later pursued a career in television, working for CBS President Frank Stanton before working in entertainment law. 

She married numismatist Jerry Lebo in December 1998. In addition to her husband, Carmody-Lebo is survived by her mother, Bea Lenskey of Huntington Beach, California; and her brother, Donald Lenskey of Gladwin, Michigan.

In biographical information she supplied the ANA in 1995, Carmody-Lebo said, “The contribution for which I’d most like to be remembered? I always did my utmost to benefit my fellow hobbyists. The riches I have gained have been immeasurable; not just in the acquisition of items but in the priceless circle of friends on whom I can rely in even the most difficult times.” 

Originally Release Date: January 3, 2001
ANA Contacts: Phone: 719-482-9872
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