Marion N. (Palmer) Murnion

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Marion N. (Palmer) Murnion passed away on June 7, 2019, at 6:30 p.m. at Wheatland Memorial Healthcare in Harlowton. She was born on April 22, 1927, in Glendive, to Earle and Norma (Iehl) Palmer, the third of four children.

Marion attended school in Rosebud, graduating in 1945. Her high school years were all the World War II years. Extracurricular activities were all but shut down, and severe rationing limited travel and activities. Four high school summers were spent with her mother in Portland, Oregon where she was employed all four summers. She returned to Billings in September 1945. She attended college and later became a telephone operator. It was at that time she met her future husband James Murnion. They were married in Fairbanks, Alaska on June 26, 1948. They resided in Fairbanks, Valdez, and Anchorage in that nine years.

To this union 13 children were born, five in Alaska and eight in Jordan. They moved to Montana in 1957 and spent the first year in a spare house on James’s brother Philip’s ranch, and then settled on the John J. Murnion Ranch in Jordan. During that time Marion’s best friend was her sister-in-law, Loriene Murnion. Marion’s last move, in 1970, was to the ranch north of Shawmut, where she resided until May, 2019.

Marion’s activities and interests included 4-H leadership, gardening, rodeos, hiking, and biking. She worked all the puzzles she could find. After high school she was involved in bowling, basketball, and softball. Sports were important to her and she followed her children and grandchildren in sports, programs, etc. She joined the Catholic Church at the time of her marriage. She was a long-time member of the Harlowton Ladies of the Moose and of the John Birch Society. Dominating a large part of her life was 33 years of children in elementary and high school. On Marion and James’s 40th wedding anniversary they took a road trip with their youngest daughter, Marcie, to Fairbanks, Alaska to visit friends and attend the church where they were married, 40 years prior to the day. Marion showed an uncommon resilience during hard times of drought and severe winters at the ranch north of Shawmut.

Marion was predeceased by baby sister Mar jorie in 1931, her parents, husband James, sons Michael and Thomas, grandson Justin, brother and sister-in-law, Earle Jr. and Beverly Palmer, and brother and sister-inlaw Leroy and Billie Palmer. Surviving are her children David (Jacqueline); Katrina; Mark; JoAnn Feger (Steve) and Hannah; Tim (Paula) Michael, Jason, Mandy, and Matthew; Dennis, Craig, and Jenna; Jaqueline, Katherine, and Madeline. Bart (Kaia) Andrea (Jason), Brian (Anna), Kevin, Jonathan (Rebekah), William (Meagan), and Alex; Cathy Kirkpatrick (Mark) Kelsey (Tyler), Fawn, Colt, and Cory. Patty DeVries (James), Riley (Sara), Mary, Ethan; Mick (Annette), Morgan, and Micky; Barry (Mary) Devin, Sadie (Zach), Barry Jr., Brandon, and Benjamin; Marcie DeBuff (Randy), Britney (Isiah), and Valen. Also, 31 great-grandchildren, and six nephews and nieces and their families.

At her request, a private burial has taken place at the ranch cemetery northeast of Shawmut. A memorial service is planned for Saturday, June 22 at the Ryegate School Gymnasium, 11 a.m., in Ryegate.

If friends or relatives desire, memorials can be made to ambulance services at Roundup, Ryegate, or Harlowton or to a charity of choice.

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