Constance B. Hanson passed away on Monday, October 16, 2006, a few days shy of her 88th birthday. She was born October 29, 1918, in Portland, Oregon to Alfred T. and Florence P. Brown. After completing grade school in California, she moved with her parents, two older brothers and a younger sister to Peoria, Illinois, when her father joined the Caterpillar Tractor Company. Upon graduation from high school in Peoria, Connie enrolled in Stephens College and later graduated from the University of Illinois where she was a Kappa Kappa Gamma. She served with the Red Cross in Italy during World War II. On a blind date in Naples, she met her future husband, Norman Hanson.
Norman and Connie were married in 1946 in Peoria and headed west to settle in Billings, where Norman began practicing law. Compassionate and engaging, Connie became actively involved in the community. She was a founding member of the Junior League, a member of Chapter Y in PEO, and a tutor in the H.O.S.T. program. Warm and caring, Connie not only nurtured her children but always had a kind word and a way of making others feel good about themselves. Never one to seek the limelight, she lived by her motto of “think of others before yourself.” She enriched the lives of others with her modesty, grace, generosity, and sense of humor. She was often praised for her culinary talents and was a charter member of the “Billings Eating Club.” She honed her skills with cooking classes in Italy and often shared the fruit of her labors with her many friends.
During the 56 years of their marriage, Connie and Norman were kindred spirits, devoted to family, and enjoyed traveling, playing bridge, reading and continued education. They raised three children and enjoyed four grandchildren. They were long-time members of The First Congregational Church.
Connie was preceded in death by her husband, Norman, in 2003. She is survived by her son, David, of Fairfield, Iowa; her two daughters, Margaret Costan of Washington, D.C. and Sara Walsh of Westport, Connecticut; her grandchildren, Jonathan Costan and Constance, Elizabeth and Alexandra Walsh; and a sister, Margaret Borden of Peoria, Illinois.
A memorial service for Connie will be held at The First Congregational Church of Christ on Sunday, October 22nd at 3 pm. Those wishing to honor her memory may send donations to the Norman and Constance Hanson Legal Writing Award, University of Montana Foundation, University of Montana, Missoula, Montana, 59812.