After struggling for years with Alzheimer’s, at the age of 76, Carole Ann Bratlien peacefully passed away early Christmas morning, December 25, 2017 at the Big Sky Care Center in Helena. Carole had been a resident at Big Sky for the last 4 months.
Carole was born and raised in Townsend, MT. She was born September 27, 1941, the first child born to Emma and LeRoy McElravy.
After graduating from Broadwater High School, she moved to Helena to work for Western Life. Western Life transferred Carole to Minneapolis, where she worked for one year. After returning to Helena she worked for Union Bank. While living in Helena she met her future husband, Blair (Punch) Bratlien. They were married on September 28, 1962. Their son Bart was born in 1966 and their daughter Connie was born in 1967.
Carole and Punch started Bratlien Plumbing and Heating in 1974. She was bookkeeper and appointment scheduler for the business. After they retired from the plumbing business, Carole worked for Dillard’s in the Capital Hill Mall.
Carole was an avid reader. She enjoyed going to ceramic classes and making several pieces for her home. Playing cards and fun games, especially dominos was a favorite pastime of hers. She will be fondly remembered for often referencing her hidden “Book of Rules”. Of course, her rules were always correct.
Carole enjoyed organizing family holiday get-togethers. She always prepared delicious meals and her favorite chocolate mint torte for dessert.
Carole looked forward to the many family camping outings and their fishing trips relaxing in their boat. Also, the floating trips down the Missouri with the Zanto family.
Being a true friend of pets, Carole enjoyed having a family cat and dog in the house.
Carole was preceded in death by her parents Emma and LeRoy McElravy, her in laws Arta Mae and Eddie Bratlien, and her brothers in law Tom and Jerry Bratlien.
Carole is survived by her husband Punch, son Bart, daughter Connie Jacobson (Mike), grandson Ian Jacobson, brother, Clayton McElravy (Sheryl), sister Susan Mattson, brother in law Paul Bratlien, sisters in law Sally Bratlien and Patricia Zanto (Patrick), and several nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank all the caregivers at Big Sky Care Center and St. Peter’s Hospice for making Carole’s final days as comfortable as possible.
Cremation has taken place and services will be announced in the spring.