On Friday, October 2, 2020, Madeline June Utter passed away peacefully at the age of 94. She was born in Flathead County on June 23,1926 to Norwegian immigrants, Clarice and Ludwig Rost.
She called the Tobacco Valley home in 1945 where she spent her days teaching children at the Pinkham Schoolhouse. With no electricity or running water, she would build a fire each morning to warm the room where she taught her students.
In January 1946, she met Navy sailor, Francis Lee Utter, while playing cards with friends. They married that May. They lived up Pinkham on their own property and raised their children Ken Utter, Terry Utter, Keith Utter, Pam McKeever and Patsy Sifford. Many years later they were blessed with daughter Melody Casey.
She spent her years as an educator, mother, and writer of the Pinkham Prattle. She was a faithful Lutheran with husband Lee and an avid member of Holy Cross Lutheran Church. The Red Hat Society symbolized her character and red and purple were her signature colors.
She was a pioneer of the community. She helped institute the Senior Citizens Center, VFW Auxiliary, Moose Horn Club, Cub Scouts, Christian Women’s Club, and the Historical Village. She traveled the world visiting Japan, England, Spain and took a boat to Africa. She even visited her parent’s home country of Norway.
She is preceded in death by her parents, husband Francis Lee, brothers Carroll, Lee and Robert Rost, sister LaVina Eslick, sons Keith and Terry, granddaughter Amber and great-granddaughters Lakeisha and Jada.
Her brothers Maynard and John Rost and children Melody, Ken, Pam and Patsy, grandchildren Justin, Travis, Sean, Ashley, Mark, Chad, Amy, Trevor, Shane, Ryan, Lana, Brandon, Jason, Kendra, Patrick, Alese, Gene, John, and A.G. III, survive her.
A private family funeral will be held on Thursday October 8 at 2 p.m. at the Holy Cross Lutheran Church. A public graveside service will follow at 3 p.m. and a meal for family and friends will start at 4 p.m. The viewing is from 10-11a.m. on October 8 at the funeral home. Arrangements are by Schnackenberg Funeral Home in Eureka. Online condolences and memories may be shared at www.schnackenbergfh.com.
In her memory, the family would appreciate donations to your favorite charity in Madeline’s name.
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