STEVEN M. BOTTEN and LINDA R. BOTTEN
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Steven McKay and Linda Renee Botten died tragically Sunday, Feb. 18, 2007, near their home in Ventura County, California. Together they shared a beautiful life full of happiness and adventure. They will truly be missed on this Earth, but never forgotten.
Steve attended The University of Montana in Missoula, where he earned a bachelor's degree in business. Linda attended Colorado State University in Fort Collins, where she earned a bachelor's degree in occupational therapy. During an internship in Missoula, Steve and Linda were introduced by mutual friends, and Steve managed to sweep her off her feet. A short time later, they began their eternal journey when they married on Nov. 25, 1978, in Freeport, Long Island, N.Y.
They made their first home in Spokane, Wash., where their two daughters were born. In the winter of 1982 they moved to Bozeman, where Linda began to build what would become a highly regarded occupational therapy practice, eventually specializing in hand care. At the same time, Steve began a computer programming and accounting practice. In 1986, their son was born and Steve finally got his "little buck."
Steve and Linda decided to settle in Bozeman where they raised their three beautiful children. The family took full advantage of the many recreational activities available in the mountains such as skiing, hunting, boating and fishing in the pristine lakes and rivers near their home.
In early 2000, Steve and Linda were offered an opportunity to open a hand therapy practice in Santa Barbara, Calif., and moved to Carpinteria and later, Oxnard. Together they built the practice, and at the time of their deaths it had grown to five offices throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. The family continued to enjoy an active lifestyle that now involved their grandchildren who fondly referred to them as "gramma and papa."
When they weren't spending time with their children and taking care of their "babies," they enjoyed traveling to their favorite places in Montana, Jamaica and Manzanillo, Mexico. Steve and Linda gave their children a life rich with opportunity and encouragement. Most importantly, they believed in the value of friendship within family.
Steve and Linda are survived by their beloved children, Stephanie Renee and husband, Joe Merino of Oxnard, Calif.; Melissa Joy Botten of Los Angeles, Calif.; and Christopher Michael McKay Botten of Oxnard, Calif.; and their cherished grandchildren, Anthony, Joseph, Jackson Steven and Jossilyn Renee Merino.
Steve was predeceased by his adored father, Harvey Botten; and is survived by his beloved mother, Barbara Botten of Albert Lea, Minn. He leaves to mourn his two loving sisters, Anne Botten of Albert Lea; and his twin, Susan Kracum of Eden Prairie, Minn., and her two children.
Linda was predeceased by her beloved parents, Charles and Gloria Mehrmann of Freeport, N.Y. She leaves to mourn loving sisters, Nancy Ardizone (Richie) of Clermont, Fla., Kelly LaTorre of Shirley, N.Y., and Sharlene Gianfortune (Sal) of Viera, Fla.; brothers, Charles (Sandra) Mehrmann of Clermont, Fla., and Thomas (Judy) Mehrmann of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and many adored nieces and nephews.
In addition, Steve and Linda are survived by a wealth of very dear extended family and friends, all of whom are grieved by their passing.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Linda Botten Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o the American Occupational Therapy Foundation, 4720 Montgomery Lane, P.O. Box 31220, Bethesda, MD 20824-1220. Contributions may also be made to Trout Unlimited and Pheasants Forever, preservation organizations that Steve was involved in.
Arrangements are being handled by the Santa Clara Mortuary in Oxnard, Calif.
A funeral service is scheduled for Thursday, March 1, at 2 p.m. at the San Buenaventura Mission in Ventura, Calif., with a reception to follow.
A memorial service in Bozeman is planned for a later date.
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle from Feb. 23 to Feb. 25, 2007