Esther was born August 9, 1921, to William and Justina (Voth) Nickel at their rural home in the Volt community north of Wolf Point, Montana. She received her education in a local country school and also attended Lustre Bible School.
January 1, 1942 Esther married Clarence Olfert. Eleven months later Clarence was drafted into the U.S. Army and Esther joined him during his training in Texas. When Clarence was sent to serve in the European Theater during WWII, Esther returned to Wolf Point where their first daughter, Arlene, was born. Clarence came home to the one year-old daughter he had never met and began his career as a grain buyer for the Equity Coop Elevator in Wolf Point.
As their family grew, Esther was a homemaker and later served as bookkeeper for Clarence at the Equity Elevator for many years and later at a new Cargill grain terminal in Wolf Point. Clarence and Esther were very active in the Montana Grain Growers Association and Northeast Montana Elevator Association.
Esther and Clarence moved to Billings in 2005 and enjoyed visiting with their many friends who had also moved from Wolf Point. They transitioned to Bonaventure Senior Living community in Billings in 2009. After Clarence’s passing in 2011, Esther resided at Sweetwater Retirement Community and Eagle Cliff Manor.
Esther was preceded in death by her husband; infant brother Carl; and sister Rosalie. Living family members include her sisters, Louise Penner of San Diego, California and Ruth Maus of Andover, Minnesota; brother, Wilmer Nickel of Rapid City, South Dakota; and four children: Arlene (Jim) Holmes of Waverly Hall, GA.; Bill (Joyce) Olfert of Olympia, WA; Delores (Allen) Dancer of Evanston, WY, and Dennis Olfert of Billings, Montana; 6 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.