On Nov. 10, 1941, the Gallatin Valley welcomed Marlene Estelle Rector to Rusty and Esther Seifert Rector. She was a 1960 graduate of Belgrade High School. Upon her graduation, she attended two years at Montana State College and was a member of the Chi Omega Sorority.
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On March 14, 1964, Marlene married Marvin Lester "Les" Welch. They began operating Rector Ranch raising small grains and cattle. They had two children, Carol (Pete) and Dean (Gina). On July 9, 1974, Marlene was widowed by Les' sudden death.
Marlene was active in her fraternal societies. She was a member of the Belgrade Chapter of Job's Daughters, Order of Eastern Star in Belgrade, and Daughter's of the Nile, Sapphira No. 79, Helena, Mont.
Marlene continued to live on the ranch in Spring Hill raising her beloved Red Angus cattle. She was an active member of the Montana Cowbell's and Montana Red Angus Association. In 1976, Marlene bought her first registered Red Angus cows from J H Leachman. She proudly and passionately continued raising Red Angus cattle until 2008.
Marlene became an avid quilter hosting retreats with friends from around the state. She continued creating quilts for family and friends up until the time of her death.
In 2003, Rector Ranch relocated to Roy, Mont. In April 2004, Marlene moved to Lewistown, Mont. to be closer to her much-loved Red Angus cattle. While living in Lewistown, she made many friends while working at Don's Western Wear.
During the winter of 2010, Marlene and Rector Ranch entered into a new venture in Silesia, Mont. at the Cottonwood Equestrian Center, where she resided until her passing on Aug. 16, 2014.
Her legacy will continue on with her grandchildren: Wyatt Dean Rising, Garrett Allen Welch, Morgan John Rising, Reed Daniel Welch and Mylee Grace Welch.
She is survived by her two children, Carol (Pete) Rising of Wibaux, Mont. and Dean (Gina) Welch of Silesia, Mont.; one brother, Dr. Robert W. (Diana) Rector of Gold Canyon, Ariz.; two nieces, Sheryl (Pete) Peck (Courtney, Trevor, Alex and Tucker) of Bozeman and Michelle (Shawn) Cole (Skyler, Cerissa, and Camber) of Bozeman.
She was preceded in death by her father, R L Rector; mother, Esther; and husband, Les.
There will be no visitation.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be directed to Montana Red Angus Association reference Marlene Rector- Junior Red Angus, 93 Redland Ranch Lane, Hysham, MT 59038.
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 on Aug. 21, 2014