BOX ELDER - Isabel M. Bitz, 87, died Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2004, at a Havre Care Center of natural causes.
Her funeral service will be 11 a.m. Friday at the Fifth Avenue Christian Church in Havre with the Rev. Rowlie Hutton officiating. Burial will follow at the
Highland Cemetery. A fellowship luncheon will be held at the church immediately after the graveside service.
Isabel was born on Dec. 14, 1916, on the family farm in Brady to Harry and Selma (Wagner) McClintock. She was an only child. She attended country school in Brady and rode a horse three miles to school. She graduated from Brady High School in 1935. She then attended the University of Montana and graduated in 1939 with her bachelor of arts degree. Isabel taught school in Rapelje for a few years and Box Elder.
She married Herbert G. Bitz on July 23, 1943, at the Presbyterian Church in Havre. Together they moved to Brady, where they farmed with Isabel's parents. In 1949, the couple moved to Box Elder, where they purchased land and operated a farm and ranch. Isabel worked on the farm and ranch with her husband along with substitute teaching for the Box Elder School. The couple had two children, Margaret and Donald. Isabel was baptized in May of 1954 at the Sixth Avenue Christian Church.
Isabel loved the farm and ranch and was very active in its operation. She had a passion for literature, reading and poetry. She was instrumental in the merging of the Havre Library and the Hill County Library and also served on the board. Isabel's greatest gift was her gift of teaching and she was honored to teach Bible classes at the Fifth Avenue Christian Church for more than 48 years.
After her husband's death in 1987, Isabel began traveling, having never been on a airplane before. She traveled to Ireland, the Caribbean, Mexico, Alaska, Australia, New Zealand, Nova Scotia, the Southern United States. Her last trip was through the Panama Canal.
Isabel had two very special friends, Barney and Earleen Franklin, who cared for her for the last three years and allowed Isabel to stay at her home until the last two weeks.
She was preceded in death by her parents and her husband, Herbert in 1987.
Survivors include her daughter, Margaret (Dean) Shearer of Reno, Nev.; son, Donald (Caroline) Bitz of Box Elder; grandchildren, Dawn Marie Martinez of Pueblo, Colo., and Matthew Bitz, who is studying at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand; and special friends, Earleen and Barney Franklin.
Memorials in Isabel's honor may be made to the Fifth Avenue Christian Church, 2015 Fifth Ave., Havre, MT 59501 or to the Havre-Hill County Library, 402 Third St., Havre, MT 59501.
Services and arrangements are under the direction of Holland & Bonine Funeral Home.