COLUMBIA — Belinda Hulen was a dedicated accountant at Boone County National Bank, where she worked for 23 years.
She was also intelligent — she graduated summa cum laude from Columbia College.
But most importantly, said her husband, Kenneth Hulen, she was "a very family-type lady."
"She helped keep everybody together," he said. "She'd take off work to help take her dad to the doctor."
Belinda Gay Hulen of Columbia died Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013, after an accident during a family bike ride in Rocheport. She was 53.
She was born May 21, 1960, in Columbia to James and Barbara Freeman.
She married Kenneth Hulen on May 14, 1983, at Wilkes Boulevard United Methodist Church.
"When I first met her, I knew she was something special," Kenneth Hulen said. "I remember she had beautiful eyes and the softest hands — the prettiest hands — and a really gentle touch."
Mrs. Hulen worked full time while taking college classes. Her graduation in 1999 pushed her daughter, Jessica, to continue pursuing her own education, Kenneth Hulen said.
"Seeing her mom come in with that hat and the robe and the big smile on her face made her want to be like that, too," he said.
"Without my mom, I probably wouldn't have graduated college," Jessica Hulen said. "She really helped me along the way."
In her free time, Mrs. Hulen helped with charity walks and volunteered at a local food bank.
She enjoyed reading and could finish a book a week, according to her daughter.
Mrs. Hulen also loved classic rock, a day at the winery and well-painted nails.
"She thought your hands had to look pretty because more people look at them than you think," Jessica Hulen said.
Mrs. Hulen was "like an angel," Kenneth Hulen said.
"I was so lucky to meet somebody like her," he said. "She was a very special woman."
Mrs. Hulen is survived by her husband, Kenneth Hulen; her daughter, Jessica Hulen; her parents, James and Barbara Freeman; a sister, Marsha Schafer; and two brothers, Lance Freeman and his wife, Becky, and Tim Freeman and his wife, Karen.
Visitation will be at 10 a.m. Friday at Memorial Funeral Home, 1217 Business Loop 70 W. Services will be at 11 a.m. at the same location, followed by burial in Memorial Park Cemetery.
Memorial contributions can be left to support the family or a charity of the donor's choice.
Condolences can be left at www.memorialfuneralhomeandcemetary.com.