Jase Owen Norsworthy

February 21, 1926


December 8, 2020

Jase Owen Norsworthy

February 21, 1926


December 8, 2020

Jase Owen Norsworthy died peacefully on December 8, 2020, surrounded by his children, just two months shy of his 95th birthday. He died from kidney and respiratory failure. Though his most cherished titles were familial, Jase was a visionary, philanthropist and civic and business leader.

Born in Shubuta, Mississippi on February 21, 1926 to a family of meager means, Jase was the third of four children. Immediately after high school graduation in 1944 he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, serving as an airplane mechanic. He graduated from the University of Mississippi with degrees in Business Administration and Law.

He met Margaret Ann Bowen playing bridge in the student union and they began their endearing love story in Tupelo, Mississippi on June 10, 1950. Their devotion to one another was unmatched, and they became role models for marriage partners and parental wisdom. Margaret Ann died in 2018, 68 years and 5 days after they were married.

They moved from Mississippi to Circle, Montana in 1952, where Jase entered the oil and gas business with his father. After moving to Billings in late 1953, Jase and Margaret Ann embedded themselves in the community. Jase immersed himself in his entrepreneurial career, quite literally until the day before his death.

Alongside community leaders of his generation, Jase re-imagined a better Billings for its citizens and devoted years supporting that vision. His decades-long philanthropic and community contributions include: President of the Billings Chamber of Commerce, Trustee and Chairman of the Boards at Rocky Mountain College and Deaconess Medical Center (Billings Clinic), and Chairman of Forward Billings. Jase also served on the Boards of Directors at the Northern Rockies Cancer Center and First Bank Billings, was a significant supporter of the Alberta Bair Theatre, and received an honorary Doctor of Laws from Rocky Mountain College after being elected to its Hall of Fame. He was a long-time member of the American Association of Petroleum Landmen and served in numerous leadership capacities at Billings First Congregational Church.

Jase gave his time and talents to the state of Montana by serving on the Boards of Directors for the Minneapolis Federal Reserve and US WEST Communications and was one of four founding members of Big Sky Airlines.

He will be remembered for his lifelong love of learning, his resolute ethical standards, intellectual brilliance, his generosity, kindness and his respect for others. A true southern gentleman, he was the best of men and represented the best of mankind.

Jase was preceded in death by his parents, his three siblings, and his beloved wife Margaret Ann. He is survived by his children, Lynn Norsworthy of Boston, Sally Roberts (Harold) of Cherry Hills Village, CO, Amy Norsworthy (Jim Moreland) of Billings, and Jase Norsworthy, Jr. (Karen) of Billings. Also surviving are ten grandchildren, Amy, Megan, Katie, Jase, Molly, Emily, Maggie, Owen, Charlie and Addison. Jase had six great-grandchildren, Nassif, Aidan, Fiona, Caroline, Blake and Rowan. His nieces and nephews considered him a second father.

A memorial service is tentatively scheduled for June 10, 2021, which would have been Margaret Ann and Jase’s 71st wedding anniversary. Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary is in charge of arrangements. Memorials may be made to the Billings Clinic Foundation, 2917 10th Ave. N., Billings, MT 59101, or to the charity of the donor’s choice.

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10 thoughts on “Jase Owen Norsworthy”

  1. AMY and Chase and Karen: MY DEEPEST sympathy to you and all of your family. He was such a gentleman!!! And your little mother was so sweet…I always looked forward to seeing them in church on Sunday mornings… along with my little mother, Esther. Amy… my mom thought the WORLD of you too.. Take care of yourselves and GOD BLESS EACH and everyone of you… Marilyn & Gordon Campbell

    1. How thoughtful of you. I loved your mother as much as you loved mine. Such great people. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  2. To the Norsworthy Family,
    I met this family at First Congregational Church. Admired his contribution to church and community. WAs a founding Board member of the Prairie Tower and Big Sky Apartments housing project serving the less fortunate.
    May the family be blessed by their memories.

  3. To Amy and the rest of the Norsworthy family,

    I want to offer my sincere condolences for your loss. Jase and Margaret Anne were wonderful and supportive friends to my parents and our entire family. Our lives might have been very different if not for their friendship. Your dad was the definition of a class act and will always be remembered with respect and affection.

    1. Thank you, David. They all were wonderful friends and business associates. They worked hard. I will never forget the conversations in my Dad’s office when Langdon would stop by for a chat. Those are such great memories of two friends reminiscing a long and successful career. Just the best!

  4. Jase & Family,
    To let you know thinking of you & hope you find comfort in knowing friends/neighbors care.
    Chris & Marlene Carstens

  5. Jase was a true southern gentleman. He helped to make Billings, Montana a better place through his actions and generosity. He raised a lovely family and cherished relationships for everyone. I was honored to serve your family when Margaret Ann passed and I loved to sit and listen to Jase talk and reminisce about his life. (that adorable southern accent make it even better)! I know he missed Margaret Ann so much, and I find peace knowing they are together again in heaven. My condolences to the family of Jase Norsworthy.

    Shawnee Krauszer

  6. Jase was one of the finest men I ever met in my life and he will truly be missed by all who knew him. I worked for him for many years and I couldn’t have asked for a better boss to work for. Rest in Peace Jase.
    James Knapp

  7. Jase was a dear man. My heart goes out to all of you. I have so many fond memories of my time working for the Norsworthy and Reger company and I will always be indebted to Jase and Jim for giving me that opportunity. God Bless all of you.
    Carol (Killin) Roberts

  8. I was blessed to know Jase and enjoyed stopping by his downtown office. He always made me feel welcome wanted me to sit down and visit. He had a gifted spirit that seemed to invite you in. After leaving Billings for a decade, I lost track of Jase, but continued to think of him often and looked forward to future visits. I heard of his passing today and was sorry I never got my follow up visits. Deepest sympathy to the Jase Norsworthy family. Jase was an inspiration to me. So long Jase, I’ll look you up on the other side!

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