LODGE GRASS — Born Helene Rebecca Zier on Oct. 26, 1922, to David and Mary Zier, in a farmhouse outside of the now nonexistent village of Howard, Mont., mom recounted the event of her birth to her daughter as thus: "we lived many miles from a town of any size so there were no doctors readily available. It was planned from the beginning that a neighboring midwife would be in attendance but when the time came mama barely had time to get dad from the field. He was so excited and happy to deliver his 10th child and did so without incident."
Mom's education was completed in Laurel, Mont., where she graduated in 1940. Her amazing work ethic was cultivated in the beet fields her family worked. It was this ethic that propelled mom to work her way through school at Eastern Montana college, where she earned her teaching degree. As a first generation American, this accomplishment was a source of pride for her entire family.
Having taught in various communities around Montana, securing lifelong friends, mom met her soulmate and best friend Pete Miklovich while teaching in Lodge Grass. Marrying in 1945, mom continued her teaching career and raised a family while helping Pete reach their mutual dream of owning their own place. Mom and dad's place was often the destination for nieces, nephews, cousins and sometimes unrelated youth in need of guidance, vacation, or just supper.
Mom was a voracious reader who loved to travel. She took numerous trips to multiple continents. Imagine our surprise when we viewed a travel video of the Volga River area in Russia that featured mom as interpreter. Recent years saw mom gallivanting through multiple adventures with her dear friend Margaret Miller Torske.
As mom's family, we are continually amazed and impressed by the number of lives she has positively impacted across racial, social, and economic lines. The abundance of past students and current friends who have stayed in touch over the years makes evident that her life's work has been appreciated. Whether teaching in a reservation school, or being a good neighbor in her retirement community, our mother was always a positive contributor. We are so very proud of her legacy.
After her long and courageous battle with cancer, mom passed away the morning of March 20, 2014. We appreciated that she saw one last first day of spring.
Helene is survived by her son Carter (Jessica) Miklovich; daughter Kari (Tom) Streets; grandsons Brice and Brock Miklovich; grandchildren Kagen, Kyndra, Kaylee, and Kara; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Special thanks to the staff at Herritage Acres assisted living, Lisa Maine, Jessica, Dr. Carol Griemann, and the crew at the Big Horn County Hospital. (If we have inadvertently forgotten anyone, please except our apologies.) Please join us for a celebration of mom's life at the Fort Custer golf course clubhouse (just North of Hardin) on Wednesday, March 26, at 2 p.m. If anyone has a story, prayer, or antidote about mom, please come and share.
Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.cfgbillings.com through “Our Families.”