Elaine Joan Schlenker, 68, of Bozeman passed away Oct. 19, 2007, at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Wash., due to a cerebral aneurysm followed by several smaller strokes.
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She was born March 5, 1939, in Billings to Janette (Young) and George Stebbins, the eldest of three children.
She attended schools in Laurel, Eastern Montana College, and Montana State University where she earned a bachelor's degree. She graduated with honors and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
She was united in marriage to Leo Schlenker on Sept. 19, 1959, and the couple had three children, Michael, Merry, and Mitchell.
Elaine was active in the Methodist Church where she taught Sunday School for more than 20 years. She was a member of the Extension Homemakers for 30 years. Also for many years, she was a 4-H leader, volunteer with the Museum of the Rockies, the Bozeman Symphony, Bozeman Public Schools, Habitat for Humanity, and the Guardian Ad Litem program. In her retirement, she knitted baby hats for Bozeman Deaconess newborns, reaching the 1,000 mark in the summer of 2007.
Among her hobbies, Elaine loved to do needlework, sewing and crafts, spending time with family, and traveling. She also loved paddlewheel boat cruising. Elaine took her dream trip to Scotland with her sister in April 2007.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and by her son, Mitch, on March 6, 1986.
Elaine is survived by her husband, Leo of Bozeman; son, Mike (Shelly) of Ennis; daughter, Merry (David) Bruce of Seattle, Wash.; and four grandchildren, Robbie and Cassie of Ennis, and Mitch and Molly of Seattle. Elaine was in Seattle for a month being a nanny to Merry's daughter when she passed away. She is also survived by her brother, Paul Stebbins of Vancouver, Wash.; and sister, Alexandra Herzog of Kalispell.
Elaine's heart was donated for research purposes and her kidneys were donated so others may live.
Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 26, at Bozeman United Methodist Church.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital, Suite 3200, 915 Highland Blvd., Bozeman 59715.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Oct. 24, 2007