DaryLynne Hellekson Day
On January 14, 1983, a hurricane was born into this world. This hurricane, DaryLynne Hellekson Day, would turn the world her way no matter what the objective. This hurricane was only with us for a short portion of life. She was taken at the early age of 36, but believe me, that 36 years was full of life from artwork, drawing, music and learning to play and master any instrument she came across. She mastered 21 different musical instruments. She had a pure love of music and singing. She dearly loved singing with Grandma Jen and singing the National Anthem for many Minor League Sports Teams, along with many local and regional events, especially for her brother’s wrestling meets and football games. One of the most recent talents was putting her artwork on skin by tattooing.
She was a graduate of Anaconda High Class of 2001. She continued her education at the University of Great Falls majoring in Art and Criminal Justice. Her drive in life was family and helping others especially those that were challenged in life. She worked at New Day Ranch by Billings then went on to work for AWARE in Billings. She then wanted to come back home to Anaconda, transferring with AWARE. Seeking more challenge, she went to work for the Warm Springs State Hospital as a Psych Tech and then as a Recreational Rehabilitation Aide. Still having a desire to help others further, she became an EMT, following in the steps of her grandparents Daryll and Jennifer Dye and her mom and dad. She started working with the Powell County Ambulance. She loved her job and had a special camaraderie with her co-workers. That is where her life story ended. She was part of the ambulance crew working the demolition derby for the Powell County Fair. She saved many lives that fateful night. Seeing danger coming, she was pushing a crowd of people out of harms way without regard for herself when she was hit by a derby car that was out of control. But her legacy and heroic deeds will be remembered forever. If you need to see the definition of a real-life hero, look up her name DaryLynne Hellekson Day.
Dary is survived by her husband, Zachary Day, children, Zion and Ember Day, her parents, Darin and Tina Hellekson, Rod and Kim Day, siblings, Seth (Rachel) Hellekson, Dylon (Heavenly) Hellekson, Chris Easton and brother in heart and soul Robert Coffey. By many adopted kids throughout the years along with DaryLynn’s self-adopted family from the heart and soul throughout the years.
Dary was preceded in death by Great Grandparents, Walter and Elane Dye, Oscar and Sylvia Funell, Great-Grama Lowell, Grandparents, Daryll and Jennifer Dye and Jim and Deanna Funell.
A Celebration of Life was held at the Washoe Theatre on Sunday, August 25, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. There was one hour of visitation prior to the service at the Theatre. A reception followed the service at Beaverdam Park in Opportunity.
RIP Bum, D.
Longfellow Finnegan Riddle Funeral & Cremation Service is entrusted with Dary’s funeral arrangements. You may pay your condolences at www.longfellowfinneganriddle.com.
Nina Senecal Johnson
Nina Senecal Johnson died peacefully in her room at the Deer Lodge Care and Rehab at about 4 am on Sunday the 18th of August, at the age of 85. She was admitted there March 26,2015.
She enjoyed great care from the staff, and many visits from family and friends. She had not been cognizant for some months at the end and her final days were made comfortable by Compasses Hospice Care of Butte.
Nina was born February 1, 1934 to John and Mildred Senecal of Avon. She was the sixth child of nine. Her siblings from oldest to youngest were Jack, Don, Pete, Bob, George, Margie, Jim, and Johnny. Nina was raised on the family ranch on Snowshoe Creek Road, where her youngest brother Johnny and his wife Margarette still reside. Nina’s brother Jim and his wife Jeanie also live near by in Avon. All other siblings have passed on.
Nina received her eighth grade education, along with all her brothers and sister, by walking, and sometimes riding horseback, some distance from their home to the historic Snowshoe school, which has since been relocated and is now on display at the Deer Lodge Museum and Arts Foundation. Nina received her high school diploma at Powell County High School in the spring of 1952, during which time she met and dated Billy Johnson, son of Helmer and Clara Johnson. Nina and Billy were married June 7, 1953.
In July of 1954, Billy and Nina purchased their first property together, the Milford Moore Homestead east of Deer Lodge.
In 1957 Nina gave birth to me, Doug Johnson, and in 1960 she lost son Dace at birth.
Billy and Nina pursued their career in agriculture on the home ranch that his parents purchased in 1918. In March 1965 Billy and Nina bought the ranch from his mother.
Nina has approximately 20 nieces and nephews from the Senecal side and much family on the Johnson side.
Throughout the following 30 years Nina enjoyed successful sheep and cattle ranching, always going along on high mountain pack trips and weekend drives. Artwork was one of her dearest passions. She always had her camera handy to take photos of a scene that she would later put to a painting. She loved the holidays and all the family gatherings.
Nina was the best mother anyone could ask for. As I followed her through the sheep pens and rode with her moving cattle, every day was an important but happy lesson in life. There was something about her that drew people to her, something that was very comfortable to be around. One day, in my early teen years, I was having lunch with my grandparents, John and Mildred Senecal, when it all came to light. It was a very quiet strength and wisdom and the solid set of core values that my grandparents passed down to Nina. They were extraordinary people and their life was the same because of that strength and wisdom and values.
Nina used this all through her life. Her strength was never more apparent than when she suffered a stroke in July of 1995, permanently losing the use of her left arm and leg. The experts told us that she would need total nursing care from then on. I wasn’t sure, but my dad, Bill, knew they were wrong, and after 16 months of rehab, she returned home to the ranch. She learned to climb stairs, she reorganized her kitchen, and resumed cooking meals, and we modified her car for trips to the store. Best of all, she got back on her horse, Paint, and enjoyed riding, and continued her artwork for the next eight years. She never lost her wonderful smile and the ability to enjoy every day, despite her disability. We would all be lucky to have even a small portion of her strength and fortitude.
In 2008, as her care needs increased and her husband’s health declining, Nina decided to move to town. It wasn’t as good as ranch life, but she was comforted by more available care and closer to family and friends. Nina lost her husband, Bill, after he contracted pneumonia in June of 2009. He stuck by her side throughout their entire life together. He was her main caregiver for 13 years after her stroke. They were a great team and had many great accomplishments.
She continued a peaceful, quiet life at 201 Beaumont St. in Deer Lodge, with good care and company, until she decided on nursing care at Deer Lodge Care and Rehab. She was a very special person in many people’s lives, and I truly believe that my greatest honor and accomplishment that I will ever have achieved is being Nina Johnson’s son.
A luncheon will be held, to celebrate her life, at 2 pm, Saturday, September 21 at Doug Johnson residence at 100 Emery Rd. in Deer Lodge, for all Nina’s family and friends.
Shirley Ann Nadeau Matosich
Shirley Matosich passed away peacefully in her sleep on August 24, 2019, at the age of 91 at her home on Swan Lake after a brief and blessed relatively pain-free battle with pancreatic cancer.
Family and friends will be remembering her life and honoring her memory at a Catholic vigil (wake) at Longfellow Finnegan Riddle Funeral Home 107 Oak St, Anaconda, MT 59711 at 6:30 p.m. on the evening of August 29, 2019. Viewing begins 5 pm. A Catholic funeral mass will be held the following morning at 10:30 a.m. at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 401 Alder St, Anaconda, MT 59711. Viewing begins 9:30 am. Burial will follow immediately after the mass at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Anaconda.
Shirley was born on September 14, 1927, in Butte, to Emile and Alma Nadeau, the third of their four children. Shirley spent her early years in Butte, and after the death of her mother when Shirley was 10 years old, the family moved to Anaconda, where she attended junior high and high school.
On April 3, 1948, she married Steve Matosich, who had recently returned from World War II and was attending the University of Montana. The two had met years before in Anaconda while attending high school together.
Over their 59 years of marriage, Shirley and Steve lived in Missoula, Grass Range, Lewistown, Whitefish, and Deer Lodge before retiring in 1981 to the home they built with their own hands on Swan Lake in northwest Montana. Steve and Shirley enjoyed 26 years of retirement there together before Steve passed away in 2007.
Steve and Shirley were blessed with seven children, two boys and five girls, one of whom died tragically shortly after birth in the hospital in Whitefish. Shirley was an enthusiastic, devoted, and caring mother and homemaker. She generously gave to those in need, liberally blessing others through her gift of hospitality. She enjoyed crafts, sewing, and baking, and — in the days before the internet — traced and documented her ancestry back to 15th century France. She was active in each town and faith community in which she and Steve lived. She was president of the Deanery and Women’s Guild in Whitefish. She was an active civic participant, teacher’s aide, and religious education teacher in Deer Lodge, and she was a devoted neighborhood organizer on Swan Lake. She was also very active in each Catholic parish in each community.
One of her greatest joys was gathering her family and friends around her large dining table for a home-cooked meal, at which it was almost mandatory to discuss the issues of the day, share memories, laugh, and make new memories. She was a devoted woman of prayer and possessed a life-long love of reading and a passionate interest in self-improvement. She was always quick to assist others in the excitement of discovery. Music was a daily enjoyment for Shirley. She loved dancing with her husband, and together they could often be found on a Friday or Saturday night dancing at the Bigfork Inn in nearby Bigfork.
Shirley loved to travel by car throughout the western United States with her husband Steve, visiting friends and family. She and Steve were also fortunate to visit Great Britain, France, Yugoslavia, and, in celebration of their 50th wedding anniversary in 1998, Italy.
Shirley was preceded in death by her infant daughter, Stephanie, her husband, Steve, her older sisters, Rose and Eileen, and her younger brother “Junior”.
A loving and devoted mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and great-great-grandmother, she is survived by her four daughters, Linda Himsl, Michele Crowley, Nanice Sago, and Paula Zimmerman, by her two sons, Mike and Andrew, by 18 grandchildren, 34 great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren.
The family thanks the staff of Frontier Hospice for their kind support and requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Ferndale Volunteer Fire Department QRU by mail to 100 Ferndale Drive, Bigfork, MT 59911.
Travis James Pierson
Travis James Pierson, 43.
Travis James Pierson, born in Deer Lodge on April 20, 1976 to Gordon and Myra Pierson, passed on July 27, 2019 at the age of 43. He leaves behind his parents, wife Amy, his son Brandon, older brother Gordon Sr., nephew Andrew, younger brother Brandt and wife Heidi, and nieces Skyla and Ilayna
Always quick to bond with people, the many friends that Travis made throughout the years he thought of as family.
He attended school in Deer Lodge and graduated in 1994, spending the years between them and now in Deer Lodge, and eventually moved to Meridian, Idaho in 2011.
Travis loved riding his motorcycle and finally got to ride it to the Oregon coast, as he had always wished to do. Camping, hiking, duck hunting, being outdoors, and working on cars were his passions, but anything with his family and friends by his side made him fulfilled and happy.
His favorite holiday was Thanksgiving because he got to just hang around with those he loved and, most of all, got to eat good food! And of course the pie!
He was always able to make you smile no matter what day you were having. Always willing to stop and help, whether it was a friend or random stranger. If you needed him, he was there. He was known for telling the same stories over and over again, just to relive his fun memories with you. He was an amazing man all around, who loved so many people and impacted so many lives. He will be sadly missed and forever remembered.
Services will be Friday, August 30 at 1 p.m. at the First Baptist Church. Luncheon to follow at the Elks. Donations can be made to donor’s choice.