Joan L. Miner

Joan L. Miner, 59, of Lewistown passed away on Sept. 25, 2016 of natural causes. Born Aug. 17, 1957 in Brooklyn, N.Y.,  Joan, an only child, grew up in Brooklyn, where she attended an all-girls Catholic school. In her late teens, she met and eventually married Michael F.  Leonard. 

In 1986 they moved to Springfield, KY. and started a roofing business. In 1992, they moved to Malta, and opened The Milk River Inn, a bed and breakfast (now part of the Phillips County museum).

 In 1998 Joan lost her husband, Michael. Joan continued to reside in Malta to raise their five children. She met Madison (Matt) William Miner in 1999, and then married shortly after. Joan and Madison spent a short time in Scottsdale, Ariz., before moving to Powell, Wyo. to work a family farm. 

While in Powell, Matt and Joan started a custom cutting and hay haul business, and Matt adopted Joan’s youngest son, Michael. They later expanded that business to Central Montana, and bought a small plot of land in Christina where they made their home to this day. While in Central Montana they watched their youngest son Michael graduate from Winifred. 

Joan was a successful business woman. She was very talented in the kitchen; one would think they were dining in a fine restaurant. Joan was always the host for holidays and family gatherings.  Although her children may describe her as hard headed, she never failed to provide and always fulfilled her responsibilities. She was a strong woman who persevered through hardship and family tragedy. Always a leader, she will be missed by all who knew her. 

Joan L. Miner was preceded in death by her first husband. Michael Frederick Leonard, son Phillip Leonard of Ridgecrest, Calif., and her parents, Guy and Joan Cargulia of Brooklyn, N.Y. 

Joan is survived by her husband, Madison (Matt) William Miner of Christina; daughter Danielle (Brad) Bye of Bemidji, Minn.; son Andrew Leonard of Billings; son Paul Leonard of Ridgecrest, Calif.; and son Michael Leonard-Miner of Christina; father and mother in-law Steven and Darlene Miner of Lewistown; sister-in-law Mary (John) Peters of Lavina; brother-in-law Shawn Miner; and brother-in-law Duane (Staci) Miner of Billings. Joan also leaves behind four grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews. 

A Memorial is scheduled for Saturday Oct. 1, 2016 at 2 p.m. at  the Winifred Community Center in Winifred, Montana. 



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