Lillian E. Beck
August 24, 1921 - April 30th, 2015
Lillian E. Beck, 93, passed away peacefully in her sleep in Missoula MT on April 30th 2015. Lillian was born on August 24, 1921 in Bowdoin MT to Emil and Florence Akerlund. She grew up on the homestead in the Harb area, embracing the gospel story at age 12. Lillian attended school in Harb and Malta, except for her Jr. year which was spent in New Mexico with her lifelong friend Mary Isabelle (Morris) Adams. After high school graduation in 1939 she received a scholarship to attend the Great Falls College from which she also graduated.
Lillian met her future husband John at Geraldine convention and they were married in Needles CA on June 27, 1942 after John had been drafted into the Army. In August of 1943, when John was sent to serve in the Pacific Theater, Lillian returned to Montana and on Oct. 8th their first child Connie was born. During the war she worked for the US Customs while caring for their daughter until John’s return in the fall of 1945.
Together they raised their children on the family farm while operating the family business, Beck & Akerlund, with Lillian’s brother Ollie. After the kids were raised, Lillian not only cared for her parents for many years in her home, but also cared for her beloved husband John prior to his death on March 18, 1984. After John’s death Lillian sorely missed her companion of 42 years. In 2012 after living in Havre for 69 years, Lillian moved to Pleasantview in Missoula MT, where she resided until her death. This time was very cherished by her daughters and son who reside in Missoula, allowing them to spend precious time with their Mother.
Lillian’s hospitality was known to many. The Beck household was always full of activity, not only with their own family, but with frequent guests often sitting around the big table having wonderful fellowship while enjoying Lillian’s awesome cooking. Lillian’s joys included spending time with her family and friends, working in her garden, as well as her love for music and singing the hymns. She was often found sitting next to her children on the piano bench, encouraging them to practice, attending choir concerts or inviting others to the home to sing and play instruments. Because of this, even today all her children appreciate music. Even in her last days though her strength was gone, Lillian would play that little harmonica, never forgetting those hymns so precious to her. Above all, she was very committed to her faith and always stood true to her convictions - qualities that we all respect and appreciate today.
Lillian is survived by her children: Vernon Beck, Vicky (Wes) Langley, Neil (Thora) Beck, Beverly Leibrand, Patti Doyle; 8 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren; Nieces: Lillian (Forrest) Nelson, Carol Smith; Nephews: Herb (Dorothy) Erickson, Bill (Glenda) Erickson; and a Sister-in-law Lyla Akerlund. Lillian was preceded in death by her parents, daughter Connie, husband John, brother, Oliver, son-in-law Jim Doyle and sister-in-law Thelma & husband Bill Erickson.
A service will be held Tuesday May 12th - 1 p.m. at Hi-Line Funeral Services of Havre, 310 Dell Lane. Burial will immediately follow at the Highland County Cemetery, followed by a potluck (finger food) luncheon at the Hi-Line Funeral Services.