Patricia Ann Kirkpatrick

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Patricia Ann Kirkpatrick, age 89, of Glendive, formerly of Billings, passed away on Saturday, December 15, 2018 at the Eastern Montana Veterans Home in Glendive with family and her husband Don at her side.

Silha Funeral Home of Glendive has been entrusted with the arrangements.

Patricia A. (Lund) Kirkpatrick was born on March 10, 1929 on a ranch near Carlyle, Mont. Pat was the daughter of Claude H. and Janette (Stark) Lund. She attended grade school at Carlyle and graduated from Wibaux County High School in 1947.

She married Donald D. Kirkpatrick on December 31, 1948 in Anchorage, Alaska.  After Don’s discharge from the army he went to work for Mountain Bell in Montana and they traveled the state while Don spliced telephone cable. They settled in Billings while Don had a career with the phone company.  Pat retired from the State of Montana at Eastern MT College. Pat loved Christmas and would shop all year long for her family.

I think Mom is best described in the following:

The young mother set her foot on the path of life.  “Is this the long way?” She asked. And the guide said, “Yes, and the way is hard.  And you will be old before you reach the end of it...But the end will be better than the beginning.” But the young mother was happy, and she would not believe that anything could be better than these years. So she played with her children, and gathered flowers for them along the way, and bathed them in the clear streams; and the sun shone on them, and the young Mother cried, “Nothing will ever be lovelier than this.” Then the night came, and the storm, and the path was dark, and the children shook with fear and cold, and the Mother drew them close and covered them with her mantle, and the children said, “Mother, we are not afraid, for you are near, and no harm can come.” And the morning came, and there was a hill ahead, and the children climbed and grew weary, and the Mother was weary. But at all times she said to the children, “A little patience and we are there.” So the children climbed, and when they reached the top they said, “Mother, we would not have done it without you.”  And the mother, when she lay down at night looked up at the stars and said, “This is a better day than the last, for my children have learned fortitude in the face of hardness. Yesterday I gave them courage. Today, I’ve given them strength.” And the next day came strange clouds which darkened the earth, clouds of war and hate and evil, and the children groped and stumbled, and the mother said: “Look up. Lift your eyes to the light.” And the children looked and saw above the clouds an everlasting glory, and it guided them beyond the darkness.  And that night the Mother said, “This is the best day of all, for I have shown my children God.” And the days went on, and the weeks and the months and the years, and the mother grew old and she was little and bent. But her children were tall and strong, and walked with courage. And when the way was rough, they lifted her, for she was as light as a feather;  and at last they came to a hill, and beyond they could see a shining road and golden gates flung wide. And the mother said, “I have reached the end of my journey. And now I know the end is better than the beginning, for my children can walk alone, and their children after them.”  And the children said, “You will always walk with us, Mother, even when you have gone through the gates.” And they stood and watched her as she went on alone, and the gates closed after her. And they said: “We cannot see her but she is with us still.  A Mother like ours is more than a memory. She is a living presence.....Your Mother is always with you...She’s the whisper of the leaves as you walk down the street: she’s the smell of bleach in your freshly laundered socks; she’s the cool hand on your brow when you’re not well.  Your Mother lives inside your laughter. And she’s crystallized in every tear drop. She’s the place you came from, your first home; and she’s the map you follow with every step you take.  She’s your first love and your first heartbreak, and nothing on earth can separate you.  Not time, not space...not even death!

She was preceded in death by her parents, Claude and Janette Lund of Carlyle; brother, Robert E. Lund of Carlyle; sister, Leona and Ray Ponke of Livingston; and sister, Adele (Lund) Owens.

Pat’s survivors include her husband of 70 years, Don, of Glendive; her son, Gary Kirkpatrick and wife Cathy of Glendive; her daughter, Debbie and husband Tom Newell of Hodges, Mont.; her daughter, Candis and husband Tom Parker of Mill Creek, Wash.; sister-inlaw, Ethel Lund of Carlyle; seven grandchildren, granddaughter Danielle and husband Ryan Burrows of Laurel,  granddaughter Jenny and husband Scott Ree of Wibaux; granddaughter Jill and husband Shawn Wilcox of Glendive; grandson Carl Newell of Ft. Smith, Mont.; granddaughter Carly and husband Kent Kahl of Wibaux; granddaughter Calee and husband Todd Schlaebitz of Port Orchard, Wash.; granddaughter Lexi and husband Ricardo Aguilar of Mukilteo, Wash.;  18 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.   

Services will be announced at a later date. Memorials can be sent to the Wibaux  Endowment Foundation; PO Box 248; Wibaux, MT 59353.

Remembrances and condolences may be shared with the family at: www.silhafuneralhomes.com.

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