Marjorie J. Metcalfe


Marjorie J. Metcalfe


Marj Metcalfe

Marjorie J. Metcalfe completed her circle of life on this earth Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018.

Born in Fargo, North Dakota, to Eison and Sadie Hoiland on Feb. 22, 1921, Marj began a life filled with opportunity, spirit and challenges. She graduated from Fargo High School in January, 1940, and then attended North Dakota State College until 1942; in 1943, she transferred to the University of Michigan, where she graduated.

Ever pragmatic, she began her first job teaching English in Oscoda, Michigan. She moved West with her family and secured a job at Billings Senior High, where she taught for two years. She then moved to Great Falls, where she taught high school English, met Elmer Metcalfe, just returned from World War II.

They married in March of 1945. To their family unit, they welcomed Steve and Judy. In 1951, they moved to a farm near Benchland, Montana, where they lived for the next 40 years until Elmer’s death in 1990.

In spite of the demands of farm life, Mom always had time to drive us to swimming lessons, music lessons, 4-H activities and birthday parties. Her family was her first priority.

Always a woman with ideas and solutions, she enjoyed working in groups such as WIFE (Women Involved in Farm Economics). She participated in the WIFE truck caravan to Washington, D.C. to explain problems facing small family farms.

In the late ’50s, our family began moving to Roundup during the winter, where Marj taught English for 22 years and Dad worked in the Hoiland Garage. Many of her students appreciate her intelligence, keen mind and the rigor of her classes. Each spring we eagerly anticipated our return to the farm for the summer.

After Elmer’s death, Marj moved to Billings, where she enjoyed the Grace Methodist Church, volunteered at Billings Clinic and created fine watercolors.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Elmer; her son, Steve; and brother Joe; Marj was truly the last survivor of her generation. She is survived by her daughter Judy Swoboda (Dave), grandsons Ben (Jessica), Darin and Tom (Bridget); and four great-great-grandchildren, Carson, Andrew, Sonja and Brooke. Her many nieces and nephews remember her fondly.

We will celebrate her life in the spring of 2018.

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