Adeline "Lonnie" Lane, 98, passed away on January 13th at St. John's Lutheran Home in Billings, Montana.
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She was born Adeline Genevieve Frances Miluk on February 27, 1921 in Bismarck, North Dakota. She grew up in Mandan with her mother, Marie; her brother, Michael, and many cousins. She never knew her father. In her early years, she lived a hard life with her mother and her brother in Mandan where her mother managed a boarding house. In her late teens, she worked at the Riverside Hotel in Montevideo, Minnesota where a friend tagged her with her nickname "Lonnie."
In 1939, she moved to Three Forks, Montana, meeting her future husband, Earl, while working at the local cafe. They were married in 1940 and started a family eventually raising their three children, Claudia, Gordon and Janice at their home in Three Forks. Earl was working as a Conductor on the Milwaukee Railroad then and for the next 44 years, Lonnie was a railroader's wife putting up with the odd hours, and long days and nights alone while she took care of the children and the household.
Lonnie and her family attended Holy Family Catholic Parish in Three Forks where she spent many hours cooking, cleaning, and serving food at gatherings with the Altar Society. She kept a spotless house and was proud of it and loved to cook and entertain. She played bridge with her good friends in Bridge Club for over 50 years. A talented seamstress, she made some of her own and her children's clothes and she was always immaculately dressed even while working in the garden. She enjoyed knitting and made beautiful sweaters and Afghan throws for her family. In the summer, she would take long morning walks on the paths around the Ponds in Three Forks.
Above all, the most important thing to Lonnie was her family. She adored her children and grandchildren and cherished her time with all of them, often having them help her with household chores or tend the massive garden that she and Earl took such pride in. She taught them how to play card games and rarely lost. She loved to sit and visit in "the front room" and was grateful for the time spent with her nieces, nephews, cousins, family friends and neighbors in Three Forks over the years. She laughed with us, and at herself, when we told funny stories about her and her quick one-liners were hilarious and kept everyone on their toes. Her sweet, twinkling brown eyes never missed anything. She was kind to everyone and compassionate to a fault and even though it was hard for her, she was brave enough to stand up to anyone to right a wrong or help her family or her friends.
Lonnie lived at the family home in Three Forks up until 2016 when she moved to Billings to be closer to Janice and family. In 2017, she fell and broke her hip. After a hip replacement at age 95, she moved to Jensen Cottage at St. John's where she has been ever since. Never one to complain, she has always persevered through pain and discomfort but recently admitted that "getting old is damned hard."
We are so blessed to have shared our lives with Lonnie. We will miss her greatly. We hope you will remember her as we do--with love in our hearts and a smile on our face.
Lonnie is survived by her three children: Claudia Boyd of Montrose, Colorado; Gordon Lane of Chicago, Illinois; Janice Cochrane (Jeff) of Billings, Montana; ten grandchildren; six great grandchildren and many nieces, nephews and cousins whom she dearly loved and were very important to her.
She was preceded in death by Earl, her husband of 62 years; her mother, Marie; her brother, Michael; her half-sister, Melva; her daughter in law, Celina and her grandson Shaun.
Cremation has taken place. A celebration of Lonnie's life will be held later this summer in Three Forks.