Hazel Anna (Danley) Guthrie passed away June 15, 2014 in Bozeman. She was born Feb. 11, 1921 in Arcola, Mo. to Earl Hezekiah and Edith Irene (Crozier) Danley.
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The family moved to Lewistown, Mont. later that same year and then to Steves Fork (also called Steve Forks), Montana when Hazel was four years old. Her father traveled by horseback or Model-T Ford as a Northern Baptist colporteur missionary, or circuit-riding preacher, for two years in eastern Montana. They made their home in a parsonage attached to a small church in Steves Fork where Hazel learned to play the piano. After two years the family moved to Miles City, still traveling the prairie preaching circuit on Sundays. When she was eight years old Hazel began accompanying hymn singing in her father's services, sometimes on a pump suitcase organ if there was no piano. She attended school with her two brothers in Miles City until she was 14 years old when they moved back to Lewistown and began attending the First Baptist Church. A sister, Martha, was added to their family.
She met Harold Guthrie who became her husband after she graduated from Fergus County High School. Hazel and Harold raised four children while moving to several small towns where Harold taught school – Winifred, Valier, Stanford, Windham, Victor, Corvallis and Livingston. During these years Hazel taught piano students. In 1959 she began attending college at MSU, graduating with a B.A. of education. She subsequently taught 5th grade in Livingston for two years and then worked in the high school library for several years while still teaching piano in the evenings.
Hazel's life revolved around her family, her devout Christian faith and the churches she attended. She accompanied services for 65 years on piano and organ and also taught Sunday school. She took art classes at MSU and created many oil and watercolor paintings. She enjoyed knitting, crocheting, making quilts, growing flowers, rescuing old dolls and sharing her sense of humor with jokes she collected. She wrote a book, Montana Prairie People, about the years her father was a colporteur missionary. She expressed love for her family with cooking.
She and Harold lived in Livingston until 1994 when they moved to Whitehall. A few years later Hazel moved to Bozeman to continue caring for her husband who became a resident of Gallatin Rest Home. Two years after Harold passed away she moved back to Whitehall to live with her daughter and son-in-law. In 2013 she moved to Churchill Retirement Home and then to Spring Creek Inn, a memory care facility in Bozeman.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Harold; her son, Richard; her brothers, Ward and Ralph Danley; and an infant great-grandson, Aaron Plugge. She is survived by her sister, Martha (Ron) Thomas of Tonasket, Wash.; three children, Anita (Chris) Huerta of Whitehall, Gary (Jill) Guthrie of Helena, Ward (Eileen) Guthrie of Bozeman; 12 grandchildren; and 24 great-grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held at Dokken-Nelson Funeral Home at 113 South Willson Avenue in Bozeman on Wednesday, June 18 at 11 a.m. A graveside service and interment will follow at 3:30 p.m. at the Mountainview Cemetery on Star Rd. in Livingston, Mont.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service, www.dokkennelson.com.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle from June 17 to June 19, 2014