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Anna Marie Graham

| November 5, 2007 11:00 PM

Anna Marie Graham, 102, died Tuesday, Oct. 30 at Mountain View Manor in Eureka.

Born in Ironwood, Mich.on Jan. 1, 1905 to William and Louise (Martinson) Hagen, Anna migrated with her family to Washington state and later to eastern Montana where they homesteaded a dry land farm between Chester and Fort Benton.

She began attending school at the age of nine, going to school three months each in the fall and spring to country schools.

Her high school years were spent boarding with a family in Fort Benton. Following graduation, she attended Dillon Normal College for one quarter before homesickness and lack of funds took her back to Fort Benton where she began working at the Choteau County Courthouse.

In 1931, she left Fort Benton for Peoria, Ill. to marry Ray S. Graham. They had three daughters: Mary Louise, Linda Lee and Rita Rae.

Anna and Ray spent most of their life together, moving from place to place throughout western Montana.

While Ray worked as a logger, rancher and equipment operator, Anna cooked in logging camps and restaurants until Ray's death in 1959.

Anna returned to Fort Benton in 1960 where she eventually worked again in the courthouse as Deputy Treasurer, retiring in 1968.

Anna's last major move was to Eureka in 1968, moving into her very first new home built by her sons-in-law and family. Even though her move to Eureka was prompted by the desire to be close to family, she found a home for her heart as well.

The Tobacco Valley and it's people became "her's". In 2000, she moved to Mountain View Manor Nursing Home where she was lovingly cared for by the staff while still being able to see her family.

Anna's caring, generous spirit was felt by all who knew her, always being ready to give a word of encouragement, a smile and a hug.

Also preceding Anna in death were her daughter Mary Lou and her son-in-law Jack (Jacky) Stevens. Survivors include her daughters, Rita Stevens of Eureka; Linda and her husband Bill Smith of Marion; as well as grandchildren Bruce Siler, Carole Zacher, Rick Siler, Marita Oliver, Bill Crismore, Jr., Stuart Crismore, Kim Jackson and Joe Crismore; Cheri Chezem, Ray and Larry Stevens, Kari Miller, and Valida McIntyre as well as all spouses and offspring of these grandchildren.

Services were held on Saturday at the First Baptist Church in Eureka with Pastor Pat Lovitt officiating.

Arrangements are under the care of Nelson & Vial Funeral Home in Eureka.