Marilyn A. Michels


Marilyn A. Michels, 90, of Billings, formerly of Miles City, passed away peacefully, surrounded by family on Sunday morning, Dec. 1, 2013. 

She was born on May 1, 1923, in Kinnikinnick County, Wis., to Clementine and Jack Niederhauser. She was the third of four siblings, Wilma, Jack and Jerry. The family moved to Medicine Lake, Mont., in 1927. She attended schools in Medicine Lake, and while walking a mile in all kinds of weather, she graduated from Medicine Lake High School in 1941. After high school, she attended Havre Normal School for one year until the war broke out, when she and her sister Wilma traveled to Bremerton, Wash., to work in the shipyards.

She married James W. Michels on April 19, 1944. To their marriage was born three children, Jerry, Kirk and Stephanie. She was blessed to have two grandchildren who meant the world to her. She cared for them from infants all the way through grade school. They thought the world of their grammy and they enjoyed doing many things together.

She loved playing Bridge with her Miles City lady friends, gardening with her mother, golfing, skiing and recreating with her children, and she made the best fried chicken ever. She also enjoyed Saturdays and Sundays watching Grizzly, Bobcat and pro football games with Jerry and Stephanie who would give her play by play action due to her macular degeneration. When her son Kirk would visit, he would bring his guitar and play her song after song, which gave her great joy. She also looked forward to her everyday phone calls with her sister Wilma talking about the Seahawks and the Mariners. They also shared the love of a five o’clock martini, garnished with one of her homemade pickled beans.

She was preceded in death by an infant sister Jacqueline; her father, Jack; her mother, Clementine; her brothers, Jerry and Jack Niederhauser.

She is survived by her sister, Wilma, Seattle, Wash.; James Michels, Miles City, Mont.; sons, Jerry Michels (Kay Lynn), Billings, Mont., Kirk Michels (Connie), Livingston, Mont.; daughter, Stephanie Michels Quammen (Al), and her two beloved granddaughters, Madison and Marias, Billings. She also is survived by two step-granddaughters, Alison and Ashley Quammen, California; and numerous relatives and friends, too many to name. 

A memorial service will be held at a future date to be determined. Smith Funeral Chapels is in charge of cremation. Condolences may be sent to Stephanie Michels, 3137 Stillwater Drive, Billings, MT 59102.