Lilly Kasseroler Halverson Ryan turned 100 years old earlier this year. Many people attended this momentous birthday celebration on Aug. 12, 2016.
Lilly and her twin sister Lena were born in Polson in 1916 and were raised on a homestead in the Irvin Flats area west of Polson. Her parents, Karl and Anna Kasseroler, immigrated to America from Bozen, Austria (now Bolzano, Italy) with three children, Tony, Charlie, and Anna, in the early 1900s. Later, three more children joined the family, Rena, (born in Kalispell) and the twins. Lilly and Lena were inseparable and were called “the babies” by their older brothers their entire lives.
Lilly has fond memories of growing up on the Irvin Flats homestead. One of her favorite activities was riding horses with her sister Lena. The sisters would do tricks such as standing on the horses’ backs and switching horses on the run.
Lilly married Harold Halverson, also of Irvin Flats, and had a son, George. At the age of 19 Lilly found herself a widow as Harold died of pneumonia.
Later Lilly married Ed Ryan of Anaconda to whom she was married for more than 60 years. Two children were born from this marriage, Butch and Patty.
At her 100th birthday celebration she credited her long life to “family, friends, and food.” Her family includes three children, nine grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild, all of whom feel lucky to have her a part of their lives.