Cleo Marjorie Fessler, age 101, went to sleep peacefully at her residence at Parkview in Miles City, Montana, on August 31, 2020.
Cleo Marjorie Fessler was born October 17, 1918, at her home on the family farm in Ollie, Montana, to Claud and Malissa Baker of Ollie, Montana. She was the fifth of seven children. She grew up on the farm and helped in the General Store which her father owned. After Cleo graduated from High School in 1937 she went to Glendive, Montana, and worked in Carrie’s Sweet Shop for 2 and a half years. The fall of 1940 she went to York College in York, Nebraska, for a year. In 1941 she went to Chicago with her Aunt Clara and was there when Pearl Harbor was bombed. Aunt Clara and Cleo then went to Texas and spent the winter there, and Cleo managed a soda fountain in a drug store. When they returned she started teaching school, in the fall of 1942, grades 1 through 8 at Tonquin, West of Baker, Montana. She taught there for 2 years on a teaching permit. The fall of 1944 she went to St. Paul Bible Institute in St. Paul, Minnesota, and completed one year of college there. Then in the fall of 1945 she taught school again on another teaching permit at Kinsey, Montana. It was while teaching there that she met Edward Fessler, whom she married in May 1946.
They settled in Miles City, and soon purchased a farm in the Yellowstone Valley a few miles from town. There they raised 3 children. Cleo was an avid gardener and loved to bake. Every week her kitchen would be filled with the aroma of baked bread and many other delights which she shared with neighbors and friends. Later she was active on the election board. She had a great sense of humor and loved adventure. They had many friends in Miles City, and she kept in touch with the Baker community also. Cleo had a strong faith and trusted in her Savior Jesus Christ.
She was preceded in death by her parents and all of her siblings and her husband Edward Fessler. She is survived by her children, Dale (Sharon) Fessler of Williston, ND, Marjorie (Charles) Nelson of Sturgis, SD, and Kathy (Bill) Alderman of Broadus, MT. She is survived by 9 grandchildren, 19 great grandchildren, and 3 great great grandchildren.
After her husband Eddie passed away in 2007 she moved to Joyce’s Adult Foster care home and rented an adjoining apartment. She and Joyce Conley became best friends and would occasionally be seen out for ice cream and “dragging main”. She continued to do some baking while there. In 2015 she moved to Parkview and remained there until her passing. They were a family for her and she was cared for like royalty. The family would like to thank the girls at Parkview for such compassionate care.
We are comforted to know that she loved her Savior Jesus Christ and that she is rejoicing in His presence.