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Helena IR

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Nola Belle Heald Bennitt, beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, went to be with Christ on Jan. 12, 2001. Born March 7, 1905, on a homestead in Moore, Mont., she married Russell Bennitt of Lewistown. The family was in the radio, newspaper and publishing fields in California, Texas, Arkansas and Montana.

Nola embraced life with gusto and curiosity and left a legacy of faith, strength and inspiration. Life was a continuous adventure. At age 69, she received her bachelor’s degree in music and Spanish from the University of California. She continued to be the life-force and matriarch in our family until the end.

She had resided in Dallas near her daughter, Mary, and son-in-law, Joe Harker, since 1986, where she was greatly loved by three grandchildren, Gwen, Joseph and Dan, and their spouses, and seven great-grandchildren, Jessica, Lindsey, Ruby, Haylee, Colton, Kevin and Will. She also is survived by a son, John, daughter-in-law, Dolores, and grandson, Chris, in Denver, and sisters, Helen and Margaret in northern California.

An accomplished pianist, she taught music throughout her life, played for the silent movies and was a featured soloist in community concerts.

Memorial service will be held at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, at Christ Episcopal Church, 4550 Legacy Dr., Plano, Texas, with Father David Roseberry officiating. Memorials may be made to Sky Ranch, Inc., Box 60, Van, TX 75790, or the Children’s Miracle Network.


Bonnie Virginia Andrist Krueger was born in an old farmhouse in Goodhue County, Pine Island, Minn., on Nov. 17, 1941, at 7:10 a.m. The proud parents were dairy farmers Ned and Hulda Andrist. Bonnie grew to womanhood, was confirmed at St. Paul Lutheran Church and graduated from Pine Island High School in 1959. She met and married the love of her life, Marcus W. Krueger, on Oct. 7, 1960, in Minneapolis, Minn. Marcus and Bonnie have three daughters, Valerie Kay Poland (Douglas) of Appleton, Wis., Stacia Lynn Dahl (Greg) of Helena, and Nicole Ellen Krueger of Helena. She has two grandchildren, Jonathan Douglas Poland and Heather Marie Poland.

Bonnie is survived by sisters Marilyn Rose Goff (Al) of Pine Island, Minn., Vivan Bertha Schlaeppi (Neil) of Billings, Lorraine Joy Hanson of Owatona, Minn., Nadine Marie Schlaeppi (Roger) of Eau Claire, Wis., and Margaret Ellen Tri (Harvey) of Mazeppa, Minn. Bonnie was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, brother-in-law Boyd Hanson and baby brother Gary Ned Andrist.

Bonnie has touched the lives of many people through her volunteering at St. Peter’s Hospital. She shall always be remembered for her lovely smile, cheerful demeanor, positive outlook, love for God and her love for her children and grandchildren. She bravely fought a battle with cancer for over five years. She shall be greatly missed by all that knew her.

Her favorite verse from the Bible was, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:1-3.

Bonnie’s family would like to thank the Helena medical community for their care and kindness during her battle, especially Dr. Pat Walton and Joni Walton and their family for their support, wonderful meals and compassion. The family would also like to thank Pastor Keith Johnson and the congregation of Evangelical Covenant Church in Helena for all of their prayers and many acts of kindness and love.

Over the course of her career, Bonnie enjoyed working at Benilde-St. Margaret’s High School in Minneapolis, the University of Minnesota Hospital and American Gem Corp.

As was Bonnie’s wish, cremation has taken place. A celebration of Bonnie’s life will be at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 17, at Evangelical Covenant Church, 800 N. Hoback, Helena.

Please direct any contributions or memorials to the Bonnie Krueger Memorial Fund at Evangelical Covenant Church, 800 N. Hoback, Helena, MT 59601.

Bonnie, we shall greatly miss you.


Sister Pauline Marn, SP, (Sister Margaret Cecilia) died at Mount St. Joseph, Spokane, Wash., on Jan. 13, 2001, at 87 years of age and after 69 years as a Sister of Providence. The vigil service will be held at Mount St. Joseph, 12 W. Ninth Ave., on Monday, Jan. 15, at 7 p.m. The funeral mass will be celebrated there on Tuesday, Jan. 16, at 2 p.m. Burial will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery. Hennessey-Smith Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Sister Pauline was born in Belt, Mont., on Oct. 22, 1913, to John Marn and Anna Yaklevich. Her parents came to this country from Yugoslavia. She was the eldest of six children - four girls and two boys. She attended grade school at Little Belt School, a country school, and Ursuline Academy in Great Falls, Mont., for two years before she entered the Sisters of Providence in Seattle in July 1930. She professed her first vows in 1932 and her final vows in 1935.

Sister Pauline received a BA in education in 1948 from the University of Great Falls and an MA in religious education in 1965 from the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

Sister Pauline’s primary lifelong ministry was teaching and religious education. She taught school at Sacred Heart Academy in Missoula, 1932-36; Mary Immaculate School, DeSmet, Idaho, 1936-37; Maryville Academy, DesPlaines, Ill., 1937-49; Providence Academy, Vancouver, Wash., 1949-55; St. Joseph Academy, Yakima, Wash., 1953-54; St. Joseph School, Vancouver, Wash., 1955-56; St. Patrick School, Walla Walla, Wash., (also principal) 1956-57; Holy Rosary School, Moxee City, Wash., (also principal) 1957-58; St. Catherine School, Seattle, Wash., 1958-61; Our Lady of Lourdes Academy, Wallace, Idaho, (principal of grade and high schools) 1961-62; St. Raphael School, Glasgow, Mont., 1962-65; St. Thomas Home, Great Falls, Mont., 1966-69; Central Catholic High School, Great Falls, Mont., 1969-70, and at the public school in Belt, 1972-74. She was the assistant director of the religious education program for central Montana, 1970-72 and curriculum librarian at the University of Great Falls, 1974-79. In 1987, she retired and moved to Mount St. Joseph, Spokane.

She is survived by five sisters and brothers: Rose (Mrs. Joe) Mee of Helena, Cecilia Pistoria of Cascade, Mont., Frances Gliko, Edward Marn and John Marn, all of Belt, and by many nieces and nephews.


Myrtle Ann Phillips, 1109 Billings, passed away Jan. 12, 2001, at the Rocky Mountain Care Center.

Myrtle was born in Parker’s Prairie, Minn., to Sadie and Fred Chamberlain on Dec. 12, 1914. She attended schools in Minnesota and Iowa.

Myrtle married Lester Phillips in Cresco, Iowa, and lived on the family farm near Bonair, Iowa. In the early 1940s, they moved to Waterloo, Iowa, where Myrtle worked for the Rath Packing Co.

In 1948, Myrtle moved to Augusta with her two sons. She worked in Manix Store until 1956, when she moved to Helena. She worked for the Buttrey Food Store for 25 years, retiring in 1980.

Myrt, as she was known to her many friends, loved her family; good friend, Pat; her dedicated neighbors, Al & Marge, and Mike & Verda, and her extended family, her co-workers from Buttreys. She loved her flowers, especially her roses and begonias; her faithful dogs, Peka and Mindy, and country music, especially Elvis. Most recently, she loved the books from the Talking Book Library.

Myrtle is survived by her children, Ray & Noel and Jim & Betsy Phillips, of Helena. “Nana” also is survived by four granddaughters and their families, Brenda Thomas of East Helena, Cheryl and Bill Luther of Charlotte, N.C., Debbie and Buzz Miller of Great Falls, and Stevi Pearsall of Havre; eight great-grandchildren, Devin & Travis Thomas, Brad & Daniel Miller, Kelcie & Deryk Pearsall, and Paige & Brooke Luther; sister-in-law Betty Chamberlain; niece Gail Anderson, and nephews Gary & Mike Chamberlain.

Her brothers Lawrence and Glen Chamberlain and grandson John Thomas preceded her in death.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2001, at 11 a.m. at the Elks Club, 330 Lola, Helena.

Cremation has taken place; burial of the cremains will be in the Augusta Cemetery at a later date.

Memorials are suggested to the Lewis & Clark County Humane Society, P.O. Box 5029, Helena, MT 59604; the Montana Talking Book Library, P.O. Box 201800, Helena, MT 59620, or to the donor’s choice.


OraLee Sweet of Cooney Convalescent Home passed away Jan. 12, 2001. She was born in Park City, Utah, on Aug. 22, 1906, to Patrick and Ora Martin. OraLee attended school in Butte, Mont., and later lived in Portland, Ore., with her first husband, Stanley Felber. She later married Richard Sweet in San Francisco, Calif., where she worked as an interior decorator. She then lived in Las Vegas, Nev., and returned to Butte in 1965. After moving to Helena in 1979, she worked as a senior companion at the Creative Activities Program for Spring Meadow Resources, where she had many caring friends.

OraLee was preceded in death by her parents, husbands, brother William Martin, sister Mary Pasco and nephew William Martin. She is survived by her daughter, Candace of Helena; granddaughter, Betsy and partner Kat of Lexington, Ky.; nieces, Margaret Stuart of Helena, Sister Mary Lenore Martin of Leavenworth, Kansas, Ruth Kopcha of Anchorage, Alaska, Jean Sarrazin of Clyde Park, Mont., Merle Kahles of Salt Lake City, Utah, and Betty Martin of Minneapolis, Minn., and their families, and many grandnieces and grandnephews.

OraLee enjoyed reading and caring for small animals.

Services are being planned for a later date. Memorials are suggested to the Humane Society.


Sister Maura Thompson, 91, a Sister of Charity of Leavenworth, died at 5:45 p.m., on Friday, Jan. 12, 2001, at Ross Hall, Mother House, Leavenworth, Kansas.

Marie E. Thompson was born on April 12, 1909, in Leavenworth, one of four children of Michael J. and Eva J. Brady Thompson. She graduated from Immaculate Conception and Immaculata High School in Leavenworth.

She entered the religious community of the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth on Aug. 14, 1932, and, as Sister Maura, made her profession of vows on June 17, 1934.

After profession, she taught at St. Peter’s Cathedral School and St. Mary School, Kansas City, Kansas. She served as an office worker and switchboard operator in hospitals at St. John Hospital of Leavenworth, Providence Medical Center and Mount St. Joseph Home in Kansas City, at St. James Healthcare in Butte, Mont., St. Ann Hospital, Anaconda, St. Vincent Hospital & Health Center, Billings, St. John Hospital, Helena, and St. Vincent Hospital, Leadville, Colo. Her ministries also included St. Vincent Home, Topeka, Kansas, and Mount St. Vincent Home, Denver. She served eight years as switchboard operator for St. Mary College, Leavenworth. Later, she served as clerk and typist to the community officers and coordinated the copier services; she retired to Ross Hall in 1993. Everyone saw Sister Maura as a loving and sweet person.

Survivors include nieces and nephews.

A vigil will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2001, in Ross Chapel of the Sisters of Charity Mother House in Leavenworth, where friends may call after 4 p.m. Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated in Ross Chapel at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 17. Interment will follow in Mount Olivet Cemetery on the Mother House grounds. Belden-Sexton-Sumpter Chapels in charge of arrangements. Memorial contributions may be made to the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Retirement Fund, 4200 S. 4th St., Leavenworth, KS 66048.


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