On Feb. 1, 2019, Jill Marie Frank passed away unexpectedly in her home at the age of 65. Jill was born on Jan. 21, 1954, the only daughter of Leo and Eloise Yeager. Jill grew up in the Billings/Laurel area, graduating from Laurel High School in 1972. Jill went on several years later to become the first licensed woman ironworker in Montana. She always took pride in being able to work hard, even in the last few years as her health declined.
For many, many years Jill just wanted to be a Mom. That dream came true on April 4, 1989, when Thomas was born. She devoted 18 years caring for Thomas and ensuring he was not deprived of anything and would have given him the world if she could have. Jill loved the outdoors, whether it be fishing, camping, skiing or just driving around. She also loved sports, in particular her Grizzly football, which she enjoyed watching with her Dad. Jill was part of the first girl’s basketball team at Laurel High School and she played softball for many years.
Jill’s greatest joy in life was her family and close friends, not to mention her dog Gracie. She had an amazing capacity to love and to be fiercely loyal to those whom she loved. She also had an amazing capacity to be as stubborn, hard-headed ornery as anyone you’ll ever meet. She was truly unique! Jill worked for many years as a laborer at the CHS Refinery and was known to her co-workers as Jillybean. She may not have been able to out-work you any more, but she could still make you laugh and smile.
Jill was preceded in death by her mother Eloise Yeager; her paternal grandparents Alex and Marie Yeager; her maternal grandparents James and Hazel Severens; and her three premature babies.
She is survived by her son Thomas, his wife Andrea and their children Bailey and Leo (both of whom you’ve probably seen a million pictures of on her phone!). She is also survived by her loving father, Leo Yeager; her brother Todd Yeager and sister-in-law Karen; her brother Ross Yeager and sister-in-law Kristi; her nephew Derek Yeager, his wife Annette and son Sawyer; nephew Dane Yeager, his wife Angela and sons Gabe and Tristan; her brother Ryan and sister-in-law Ginny; her nieces Anita and Elizabeth and nephew Alexander; her ex-husband Tom Frank; her step-daughter Brenda Peterson and her husband Kevin; as well as numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
Cremation has taken place and a memorial service will be held Saturday, Feb. 16, 10 a.m., at Hope Church (5554 Grand Ave.) in Billings. A time of gathering and sharing will follow immediately afterwards at the church.