Eleanore "Ellie" June Schaefer peacefully left this earthly place on Jan. 11, 2014 with her family by her side, at home in Bozeman.
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She was born on June 18, 1924, in Lansing, Mich. to George and Flora Fankboner, the only daughter in a family of six.
Upon high school graduation, she moved to West Palm Beach, Fla. where she met the love of her life, then Capt. Edward A. (Ted) Schaefer. A long distance romance ensued while Ted piloted 30+ bombing missions during World War II. They married on Dec. 20, 1944.
Following the war, Ted and Ellie settled in Ann Arbor, Mich., where Ted attended U of M. The first of their six children, John Wright was born there. Following graduation, the family moved to Huron, S.D., where three more children were born, Patricia Kay, William (Bill) Edward, and Amber.
After six years in Huron, the now burgeoning family moved to Minot, N.D. where the last two children were born, David George and Peggy Ann.
Ellie was an active member of the PEO Sisterhood, a devoted mother, and became an avid golfer during her their time in Minot.
In 1972, Ted's business interests took the family to Canada as Landed Immigrants for seven years before finally making their home in Bozeman. Ted retired as managing director of American Federal Savings and Loan in 1986, prior to his death.
Ellie continued to live and work in Bozeman until her retirement in 2006 at age 80. Many people will remember Ellie as the barista at the airport, who served them coffee and a smile as they traveled to and from Bozeman.
She was preceded in death by her parents, all five of her brothers, her husband, Ted, and her son, Bill. She is survived by five of her six children: John W. Schaefer (CJ) of Santa Fe, N.M.; Patricia Kay "Patty" Campbell (Tom) of Somers, Mont.; Amber S. Allen (George) of Bozeman, Mont.; David George Schaefer of Grafton, N.D.; Peggy Ann Schaefer of Bozeman, Mont.; as well as numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Cremation has occurred and the family plans a scattering of Ellie's ashes in celebration of her 90th birthday in June.
The Schaefer family wishes to express their deepest gratitude to Hospice of Bozeman Deaconess for their care and compassion during our time of need.
In lieu of flowers the family would request a donation be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, Warriors and Quiet Waters, or The Paralyzed Veteran's Association.
Arrangements are under the direction of Dahl Funeral and Cremation Service. Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.dahlcares.com.
Sometimes I misplace myself, and then I remember that I am. I am. I am.
I am color incarnate; a little kid on a summer day; LOVED; here and now; everything.
No need to be sad, when my time is over, I'll melt away quietly and without incident, just like the snow with the coming of Spring, but I won't have gone, forever I am, and forever I will be, here and now, there and then. When I go, I'll only be going on another adventure, this time back to the clouds for my soul to be crystallized and perfected, only to fall again to Earth to learn my nature anew.
– Emily Claire Schaefer
Dahl Funeral Chapel
300 Highland Boulevard
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Jan. 19, 2014