Phyllis Jean Olson


Phyllis Jean Olson



Phyllis, 82, passed away Monday, March 11th, at St. John’s Nursing Home in Billings, surrounded by her loving family. She was born to Charles and Annie Guckes on January 24, 1931 in Des Moines, IA.

During the depression and war years, the family moved often, finally settling in St. Paul, MN. On her first day of work at First National Bank in Minneapolis, she met a young man who became the love of her life, Martin Olson. Phyllis and Marty were married January 10, 1951.

Their first son, Martin Christopher, was born July 1, 1952. Four other children followed: Jeffrey, Laurie, David and Mike. As an only child, Phyllis had longed for a larger family, and she was indeed blessed.

They lived in Renville, MN until they moved to Conrad, Montana in 1969 to be near the mountains that Phyllis and Marty loved. Phyllis’ dream of being able to see the mountains from her living room window was fulfilled. She worked as Executive Administrative Assistant at the Pondera Medical Center in Conrad for many years, but her main job was raising 5 children.

After retirement Marty and Phyllis settled in Hamilton, MT. They loved the community surrounded by the mountains and made many lasting friendships. Phyllis and Marty loved to travel, taking many trips to Hawaii, Arizona, Florida and California.

As a cancer survivor, she was very active with the American Cancer Society and was named Montana Volunteer of the year in 1996.

In 2005, Phyllis and Marty moved to Billings. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2006. She was the first participant accepted into an Alzheimer’s drug trial in Billings. It was a long commitment but one she was willing to make. She said it may not help her, but she wanted to do it for her children and grandchildren.

As a devoted mother, Phyllis’ main joy was her family. She is survived by Marty, her loving husband of 62 years, children: Chris, grandsons Jonathan and Michael of Helena; Jeff of Great Falls; Laurie Preitauer, (husband Fred), grandson Nick, wife Sara, great-grandchildren Dominic & Mariah, grandson Adam, all of Billings; David, (wife Jean), grandchildren, Benjamin, Andrew, Anna and Samuel of Madison, WI; Michael, (wife Nancy), granddaughter Amanda of San Jose, CA.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her loving parents, Charles and Annie.

Mom, you showed us the true meaning of unconditional love. You always told us what a blessed life you had had and you have blessed all of us. Rest now, sweet lady in the arms of our Lord and your Mom and Dad. We love you. You said, “never tell me good-bye”, so until we are together again, “we’ll see you later”.

Memorial donations may be made to River Front Park, Rocky Mountain Hospice or the charity of your choice. We thank the staff of St John’s and Rocky Mountain Hospice for all their loving care for Phyllis.

Memorial services will be 2pm Saturday in the Ocee Johnson Chapel, St. John’s Lutheran Nursing Home.


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0 thoughts on “Phyllis Jean Olson”

  1. Blessings to your family. May the memories of the love you shared help to ease your heart. Laurie & Roger Czech

  2. Kimberly Hause-Dyrud

    What I remember most about your mom was her warm smile and how welcome she made you feel. May Our Lord hold you in the palm of His hand and comfort all of you.

  3. May our loving Heavenly Father comfort you as He welcomes one of His wonderful angels to heaven.Phyllis was my mentor for many years. Working under her at Pondera Medical Center was an honor. Her leadership and guidance taught me so much and I have often thought of her over the years since I left Conrad in 1990. Truly an amazing lady, I am sure your wonderful memories will keep her alive in your hearts until you meet her again. God Bless You, Linda Lane

  4. Your family is in our hearts and prayers. Having lost my mother to Alzheimer’s also, I know first hand what a terrible disease it is. Take care.
    Linda Meier Wadman

  5. Marty, My deepest condolences to you and your family. I believe the last time I visited with you and Phyllis was in Kalispell at Three Rivers Bank where I worked at the time. I did not know Phyllis well, but remember her as one intelligent, classy lady! You were a very lucky guy! Know that my thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time. Lila

  6. Andrew and Rosemary Kovatch

    With hearts filled with warm remembrances of a true ‘lady’, we send you, Marty, and devoted family, our love and prayers. May perpetual light shine upon her. We were all blessed to have known her. M. Andrew and Rosemary Kovatch, Alamos, Sonora, Mexico

  7. RoseMarie & Renee Iverson

    From the Iversons’ – Phyllis was one of a kind! Mom says she will always remember their quilting trials. Phyllis always did better & Mom has her attempts in closet. Another fond memory was our Thanksgivings together. Your Mom was the one to come up doing a project. Mom & I still have our angels. Our thoughts & prayers are with all of you

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