Lillie Martha (Dolatta) Thomason passed away March 27, 2012 peacefully at Prairie Community Health Center in Terry MT after a long, exhausting struggle with chronic myelogenous leukemia
Lillie was born on the morning of June 5th 1928, much to the delight of her parents. R.J. and Elsie (Halberslaben) Dolatta Her father excitedly announced the birth to the Terry Tribune which printed his quote “ a handsome, winsome daughter was born to him and Mrs. Dolatta.” Lillie grew up on the family ranch on Bad Route with 3 much older brothers. She learned to enjoy her own solitude and the company of many pets. This was her lifelong style. Many of her animals lived well past their natural lifetime with her attentive care. The depression and WWII shaped much of her life. She was a passenger on the last horse-drawn schoolbus to school in town. It was a huge adjustment. Weather permitting she rode her bicycle 13 miles each way on gravel roads to and from town. During bad weather she “boarded” until the family purchased a tiny “school house” in town when she was in High school. Lillie maintained that address the rest of her life, except during summers when she had a rural household so her children could enjoy the independence of rural life. She was especially proud of perfect attendance awards at school for several years.
Lillie graduated from high school in Terry and went on to the Presentation School of Nursing at the Holy Rosary Unit Miles City right after high school. The Terry hospital would become Lillie’s place of work for the next 46 ½ years of her life caring for members of her community. Half of that time was in the old two story building and half in the new facility. She was the surgical nurse for many years and worked some nights. As the facility changed, she worked more and more nights
In 1950 she married Eldred (Tommy) Thomason. They were blessed with 5 children. After retirement she enjoyed spending time with her family and had the opportunity to see some of the world as she spent time and participated in major events in her families’ lives. The first time she got more than a few hundred miles from Terry, she had to get a passport and travel to Okinawa to meet her first granddaughter. Eventually she had put her foot into two different oceans but she was always glad to be home and part of her community where she enjoyed meals and activities at the senior center and volunteering at the Prairie County Museum and Evelyn Cameron Gallery.
Lillie had a lifelong enjoyment of music and loved to dance. She played violin, clarinet, and piano and was a member of the Silver Bells Chime group and the Eastern Montana Fiddlers. Lillie became involved in 4-H with her children and influenced many young lives in Prairie County for several decades.
Lillie is survived by her five children, 10 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren; Tom (Jackie) of Indiana, Trulie (Scott Holmes) Abigail Lillian; Rob (Stephanie) Rob, Ethan, Gabriel, Arianna, Alisia,and Audrina; Joel of South Carolina, Rachel, Drew and Elizabeth; Suzanne of Terry, Meris (Tim Greges) Tyler, Sam-Argan Johnson; Dan of Terry, Jessica(Sven Undem) Eivand & Gradie; and Leslie of Terry;
Lillie is preceded in death by her husband: E.C. (Tommy) Thomason; parents: R.J. and Elsie Dolatta; brothers: Adrian, Ray H.; Newborn infant: Thomason, grand-daughter; daughter –in-law: Laura; and significant friend: Albert Siegle.
Prayer Services was held Friday, March 30, 2012 at Stevenson and Sons Funeral Chapel in Terry, MT. Funeral Services was held Saturday March 31, 2012 at Stevenson and Sons Funeral Home in Terry, MT. Interment was held in the Prairie County Cemetery. Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting:www.stevensonandsons.com.
Published April 4, 2012