Myrtle May Fitzpatrick, 95 of Sweet Grass, passed peacefully on Sunday June 11, 2017 with her family at her bedside in Cut Bank, Montana at the home of her grandson. Visitation will be from 1:00-7:00pm Wednesday, June 14 at her home in Sweet Grass with rosary beginning at 7:00pm. Funeral mass is set for 2:00pm on Thursday, June 15 at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Sunburst, Montana with burial to follow at the Sweet Grass cemetery in Sweet Grass, Montana.
She was born to George Owen and Ethel May (Hodgkiss) Court on March 25, 1922 in Lethbridge, Alberta. The only daughter along with 6 brothers grew up in Raymond, Alberta. She attended a country school until she decided that helping at home and tending to horses were more important. She is quoted, “My schooling, I learned it living.” She married Edward Arthur Fitzpatrick in Shelby, Montana on November 25, 1939. Together they had five children, including a baby boy who passed away at birth. The couple made their home in Sweet Grass, Montana until 1965 when they moved to the Browning Ranch, north of Browning, Montana. They ranched there for 20 years. Myrtle would recall those years the “glory years.” She loved the Browning ranch and all the friends they made while there. She enjoyed coffee hours with area ranch wives, barn dances, and riding horses with Ed. In 1985 they retired back to their home in Sweet Grass but that didn’t keep them away from the ranch as they returned often to Browning for brandings, picnics, or just to enjoy the beauty of the mountains and the ranch itself. Edward passed away October 6, 1992 a month shy of their 53 wedding anniversary. Nine years later, Myrtle married Ed’s youngest brother, Adjutor Fitzpatrick, on January 4, 2001. They were a comfort for each other, both being widowed, and had known each other since 1939. Myrt and Adj remained in Sweet Grass, Montana playing cards, enjoying each other’s company, and making memories as husband and wife with their beloved dog Hero. Many more family gatherings were had at their home as Myrtle loved getting everyone together for reunions, card playing, and sharing stories. Her pride and joy was her family. She and Adj shared 13 years as husband and wife. Adjutor passed away December 13, 2015. Myrtle remained in Sweet Grass, living alone, until a month before her passing when she moved to Cut Bank, Montana with her eldest grandson and his family. She spent her final day’s playing cards, drinking vanilla frappes, and being surrounded by love.
Myrtle will be remembered and respected for her spit-fire spirit (she was a red head), always going 100 miles an hour, being able to ride a horse better and faster than anyone, and the love she had for her family. Myrtle opened her heart and her home to anyone. She was not judgmental and had a way of making everyone feel special. Myrtle was a pillar of strength, courage, and resiliency. She never complained. Her most practiced values were tolerance, empathy, kindness, and optimism along with being a caretaker. She will be missed beyond words.
Myrtle is survived by her sons Dennis (Karla) Fitzpatrick, of Browning; Jim (Phyllis) Fitzpatrick, of Dupuyer; daughter Elaine (Tracy), of Helena. She is also survived by her step-sons George (Tita) Baldwin of Kalispell, Buddy (Leslie) Baldwin of Bigfork, and Bert (Janice) Baldwin of Sunburst; step-daughters Sharon (Ron) Palmer of Kalispell and Faye (Clarence) Hart of Sweet Grass, 17 grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild with another on the way. Also, 15 step grandchildren, 29 step-great-grandchildren and 5 step-great-great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her parents, two husbands, six brothers, her son Larry and his wife Judy Fitzpatrick, and grandchild Jace Fitzpatrick.