POLSON — It is with great sadness that the family of Charles “Charlie” E. Blankenhorn III of Polson announces his passing on Friday, Jan. 3, 2020, at the age of 69. A celebration of life/memorial service is scheduled for Saturday Jan. 18, 2020, at 10 a.m. at The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory, 101 6th Ave. E., Polson.
CHARLO — Richard “Arlan” Dennis passed away Jan. 2, 2020 after a battle with dementia.
Arlan was born July 8, 1939 to Charlie and Dorothy Dennis in Twin Falls Idaho. The family moved to what would become their family farm to this date, south of Ronan, in 1943. Arlan spent his school years in Ronan and graduated from there in 1957.
Arlan married Judy Heyne in March of 1961 and they had two children Linda and Rick. They divorced in 1991. In November of 1961, he was drafted into the Army Chemical Corp. It was with the chemical corp that he participated in the Nevada Atomic Bomb Testing. After his discharge, the family moved to Bonner where he began work in the local lumber mill and later moved to Pablo to work at the Plum Creek Mill.
He later started working at the local Creamery in Ronan until he started selling tractors at Stedje Bros, working there when they expanded to Missoula where he became the manager. After retiring from there, he opened his own used farm implements business and sold machinery and tractors until he moved back to Missoula to sell tractors for Big Sky Tractors in Missoula.
In 1997, Arlan married Kathy Shaw and they lived in the North Crow area until Kathy’s passing in 2010. He then moved back to the family farm on Two Creek Lane – south of Ronan, to live out his retirement years enjoying the woods and his little log cabin and where you could always find him on his tractor. It gave him great joy to teach his grandchildren to fish and hunt and he loved telling stories of his days growing up in the valley and time in the military.
Arlan was preceded in death by his parents, Charlie and Dorothy Dennis and his wife Kathy. He is survived by his children Linda (Mark) Goetsch, Rick (Brenda)Dennis, and his grandchildren Brittany (Ryan) Bryson, Brandon (Janelle) Scott, Riley (Chye)Dennis, Alexandra (Trae) Garcia and Nathan Dennis, eight great grandchildren, and he is also survived by his siblings Norma (Albert)Knutson, Jerry (Carol) Dennis, and Marilyn(Arlo) Baltz.
The family would like to give a special thanks to the Pines Assisted Living of Polson and their staff and a special thanks to Gene DeCarlo for his being a very loyal and caring friend.
Services are to be held at a later date. Messages of condolences may be shared with the family online at lakefuneralhomeandcremation.com. Arrangements are under the care of The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory.
BONNER — In loving memory of Loretta Jean Hallgren, a loving wife, mother and grandmother; she was brought into this world by her parents Milton and Virginia Hall on Sept. 6, 1939 in Butte. Loretta passed away on Dec. 20, 2019, with her loving family by her side.
Loretta was a loving and devoted wife, she married Nils Hallgren on Nov. 23, 1957 and they were married for 55 years until Nils' passing in 2013. To this union two sons were born, Bryon and Steve.
They settled in the Blackfoot Valley where Loretta and Nils built a beautiful home in the valley. Later they purchased a home on Placid Lake where they would spend much of their time with their family.
Her family also consisted of two sisters, Sandy and Deanna and two brothers, Howard and Mike and some very special nieces and nephews. When the opportunity came for them to get together Loretta was overwhelmed with joy because she knew the fun they would have.
Grandma Loretta was loved and cherished by her grandchildren; Nick, Zack, and Rhi. They always knew she would be there through good times and bad to love, support and care for them. Nick's wife Melissa and Zack's girlfriend Brooke held a special place in her heart, Loretta thought of them as her own granddaughters. Remi Bell, Loretta's great-granddaughter was only 6 months old when Loretta passed but Remi was able to bring a smile to Loretta's face when all else failed.
Loretta had a passion for cooking and baking, not only would she cook delicious meals for family, she made it her career. She cooked at Bonner School for 22 years and loved every minute of being around all the school children. She enjoyed to crochet and knit. She also loved working and being outside whether at her home in the Blackfoot or at Placid Lake.
Loretta is survived by her sons, Bryon and Steve, brothers, Howard (Grace) Hall and Mike (Roma) Hall, sisters Deanna (Lyle) Phelps and Sandy Stevenson; three grand children, Nick, Zack, and Rhi and one great grandchild Remi Bell.
A memorial service will be held Saturday Jan. 18, 2020, at 11 a.m. at Garden City Funeral Home, 1705 W. Broadway in Missoula, a reception will follow at the funeral home.
The family requests no donations. Condolences may be shared by visiting gardencityfh.com.
STEVENSVILLE — On Nov. 25, 2019, Joseph Steven Engebretson went home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus.
Joe was born in Missoula, Dec. 12, 1961. He graduated from high school and Vo-Tech in Missoula.
He worked as a diesel mechanic, then truck parts for many years.
He loved the outdoors, hunting, fishing, golf, sports, life and people. He was a wonderful son, father, brother and friend. an honest, decent, hard-working man. He will be missed by his family and many good friends.
He is preceded in death by his mother Barbara, grandparents and many aunts and uncles.
He is survived by parents Jim and Nancy Engebretson, brother Timothy, daughter Shelby Engebretson, aunts and uncles Robert and Judy Johnston, Dave and Nancy Engebretson, Alta Pearson, cousins Marta Carlson, Jerry Mitchell and many other cousins.
Memorial service is Saturday, Jan. 25, at 11 a.m. at Lone Rock Church, 1142 Three Mile Road, Stevensville, just north of Lone Rock School. Reception following service.
PABLO — Donna Rae Dubay Jones, age 87, passed away Jan. 6, 2020 from natural causes. Donna was born July 26, 1932 to Clementine and Edmond Dubay.
Donna was educated in Polson and graduated in 1950. After graduation she moved to Seattle, working for Davis Westcoast Fast Freight Company. While in Seattle she met and married William C. Fuqua. Upon his military completion they returned to the Mission Valley to work alongside family on the Dubay potato farm. Archie was born in 1954, followed by Arlene in 1956, and Alan in 1960. They later divorced.
Donna began a long career working for the BIA and Tribal Lands until her retirement in 1997. Donna purchased land in Pablo and developed a thriving trailer park. She married Bill Jones in 1976 and working together they increased the size of the court to 50 spaces.
Donna was a hard worker and never idle. She and Bill loved being outdoors wood gathering. Any day in the woods was considered a good day.
Donna was a member of the First Baptist Church of Polson for many years and a proud member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.
Donna was preceded in death by her parents, her sister and brother-in-law Kathleen (Dubay) and Don Jones, and her nephew Jerry Jones.
She is survived by her husband Bill of 43 years, sister Anita Dubay Swope, children Archie (Ginny) Fuqua, Arlene (Kevin) Templer, and Alan (Sharon) Fuqua, along with many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
A private family graveside will be held at Lakeview Cemetery. Messages of condolences may be shared with the family at lakefuneralhomeandcremation.com. Arrangements are under the care of The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory.
MISSOULA — Marjorie (Marge) H Buecheler, 91 of Missoula passed away peacefully at home on Dec. 29, 2019.
Marge was born Jan. 21, 1928 in Buffalo, New York to Ludwina Nee Hoffarth and John (Jack) Humel Buehler. Marge was the middle child and had an older sister Doris and a younger brother John.
While attending Bethany Lutheran Church in Buffalo, New York, Marge grew up and met the love of her life Robert E. Buecheler. They were married September 1947 and had their only child, daughter Lynn Susan Buecheler in 1951. She was their everything.
Like other family members, they too moved to California in the 50’s. There Marge was employed by Pacific Telephone Company and retired after 30 years as a Business Office Manager. While in California, they bought a cabin in Lake Arrowhead with two other families. The memories made on weekends and holidays with dear friends and family could create a series of hilarious books. She cherished those moments.
In 1979 tragedy struck with the passing of their only child, daughter Lynn. At that time Marge and Bob became legal guardians of their only grandchild Tobi Lynn Childers at the age of seven. They sacrificed their relaxing retirement for round two of parenthood and raised Tobi like their own, never looking back.
In 1984 Marge, Bob and Tobi moved to Hamilton where they retired and planted more roots. Marge was an active member of the Corvallis American Legion Auxilary, Mountain Shadow Good Sams and was a member of several Lutheran churches during her life.
In 2006 Marge and Bob moved to Redmond, Oregon. Sadly Bob passed away in 2007. Following her granddaughter, Marge returned to where her heart longed to be, Montana, in 2010. She loved the beauty of the mountains and enjoyed walks with her dogs, petting her cats, gardening and hosting parties. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister, sister-in-law, aunt, great aunt and friend to so many.
Survivors include her granddaughter Tobi (Mitch) Kearns and three great grandchildren Gavin, Hannah and Brooke Kearns all of Missoula; brother John (Jean) Buehler of Tucson, Arizona; sister-in-law and best friend Ruth Buecheler of Lake Arrowhead, California; and numerous nieces and nephews around the country.
As per her quest there will be no service. Marge’s ashes will be spread throughout the travels of the family. Please remember Marge by donating to your local animal shelter. She will be forever in our hearts.
MISSOULA — Joyce Koostra, age 87, passed away peacefully at her home in Missoula on Jan. 4, 2020.
Joyce was born Amy Joyce Reynolds on Nov. 1, 1932, in Surgoinsville, Tennessee, to James and Catherine (Kittie) Reynolds. She was the eldest of three sisters and attended grade school and high school in that small town in the Appalachian Mountains. She told many stories of her early life, of long walks to school and the many chores required by farm life.
In 1951 she attended Berea College in Berea, Kentucky, where she studied elementary education. It was there that she met Walter Lee Koostra, whom she married in 1954, at Danforth Chapel on the campus. The couple eventually moved to Vermillion, South Dakota, where Walt earned a Ph.D. in microbiology.
Then in 1968, with three children in tow and another on the way, the family moved to Missoula where Walt joined the University of Montana’s Department of Microbiology.
In 1972, Joyce became Missoula’s first-ever Missoula Parking Commission director, responsible for the growing downtown area of the city. She was well respected by her coworkers and community leaders for her fine work in that role.
After the very sudden passing of her husband Walter in 1988, she found years of companionship with Bill Fischer of Missoula; they met through the Missoula Kiwanis Club. After his passing, she went online and found Paul Driesbach of Corvallis with whom she enjoyed his final years playing cards, appreciating the arts and sharing laughter.
Joyce loved watercolor painting and frequently attended workshops, and she occasionally took part in gallery shows around town. The walls of her home are filled with examples of her talent.
Joyce is survived by her daughter Barbara (David Morgenroth) of Missoula and two sons, Robert (Janet) of Great Falls and Benjamin of Seattle and two granddaughters, Zoie and Molly Koostra as well as sister-in-law Rosemary King of Worthington, Minnesota. She was preceded in death by her husband Walter, her daughter Karen, her sisters Jimmie and Mary and her parents.
The family sincerely thanks the family of Bill Fischer, and Joyce’s many dear friends along with her loyal caregivers Kim and Diane for their warmth and companionship.
Donation’s in Joyce’s honor can made to the Missoula Food Bank & Community Center. A private service will take place next spring at a location in Missoula to be announced later.
PORTLAND, Oregon — Inabelle “Micki” Funk Wolstad (nee McKee) of Portland, Oregon, spent her last days with her loving family and passed away peacefully on Dec. 26, 2019. She was 88 years old.
She was born April 11, 1931, in Jamestown (Boone County), Indiana, to Sherman Lee McKee and Gladys Marie Jones McKee. She was the fourth of five living children.
She was always proud of growing up on an Indiana farm and cherished the memories of helping her mom around the house and later helping her dad in the fields when her brothers went to war. At age 18, Micki moved to Indianapolis to attend Butler University and subsequently completed her B.A. in art and religion at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas. She utilized her degree in her work as an interior decorator.
In 1950, Micki married Robert Walter Funk of Evansville, Indiana. They had two daughters, Andrea Elizabeth and Stephanie Alyson. The family lived in many parts of the U.S. as well as Europe and Canada and eventually settled in Missoula, Montana. Micki was fiercely devoted to her daughters and spent the last 15 years of her life living in Oregon to be near them.
In 1980, Micki married George R. Wolstad, a native Montanan, and this brought to the family three grown daughters: Mary Anna Woodward, Deidre Wolstad, and Janet Catena along with one grandson Danny Catena.
Micki is survived by her daughter, Stephanie Alyson McFarland, and grandchildren Alyson Jean, Katherine Elizabeth, and John Robert McFarland; her son-in-law, Glen Ray, and Glen’s children; her sister, Alice McKee Pritchett; and by the rest of her extended family including many nieces and nephews.
Micki was preceded in death by her parents, her first and second husbands, her daughter, Andrea Funk Ray, and her siblings, Francis Mildred McKee, Sherman Lee McKee Jr., John Everett McKee, and Doris Mae McKee.
Micki will be remembered as a woman devoted to her family and friends. All who knew her will miss her quick smile and friendly demeanor.
A private family memorial will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to the American Diabetes Association or the Missoula Art Museum.