TROY - Marjorie Ione Higgins, 82, of Troy died April 7, 2006, at her home.
A memorial service was scheduled for 11 a.m. today at the Christ Lutheran Church, 200 West Larch in Libby. A reception was to follow at the Elks Lodge in Libby.
She was born April 2, 1923, in Kenmare, N.D., to Engvald Bernard Beck and Ella May Bennett. Marge was raised in Shaunavon, Saskatchewan, before moving to Havre.
She married Roy Higgins in 1938. They lived in Havre and Great Falls until 1946, when they moved to Bigfork. In 1978, they built a home on Loon Lake and lived there until moving to Troy in 1997. Roy and Marge were generous hosts, constantly welcoming and entertaining guests at their Loon Lake home.
Marge started working for the post office in Bigfork in 1957 and became the acting postmaster in Bigfork in 1970. She became one of the few female postmasters in Somers in 1972 and retired from that position in 1984. She was adamant about being called the postmaster, not the postmistress. When asked about it, her comment was “I'm not the postmistress. I'm nobody's mistress.”
Marge was a member of the Rebekahs for 51 years joining in 1955. As an officer, she negotiated with Bo and Marjorie Brown to bring the Bigfork Playhouse to the Rebekah Hall in Bigfork. Without her effort, it may very well have been known as the Cut Bank Playhouse. She was very community minded. She was involved in Cub Scouts, was a Ferndale school volunteer, was secretary of the Flathead Tax Appeal Board and belonged to many other organizations.
She was very passionate about her hobbies. She started collecting coins and stamps in the early 1950s and had an extensive collection of both. She traced her genealogy back to King William the First of Holland and Edward Higgins, born Sept. 7, 1545. She was a member of the Huegenot Society. She took up oil painting in the 1960s, and her paintings are on the walls of many homes nationwide. Her favorite painting was a view looking out across the lake of the town of Somers. She was very proficient at knitting and crocheting, but her real passion was making quilts. In her lifetime, she quilted 213 full-size quilts and hundreds of baby quilts and wall hangings. She was also a voracious reader, sometimes reading up to a book a day, including every title by Nora Roberts and J.D. Robb.
The true lights of her life, however, were her great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, E.B. and Ella; husband, Roy Higgins; infant daughter, Barbara; brother, Bud Beck of Polson; sisters, Inez Lee of Missoula, Millie Kuka of Havre and Betty Nail of Kennewick, Wash.
Survivors include her son, Ron Higgins of Troy; four grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; sisters, Doris Brendgard of Pasadena, Calif. and Julia (Vern) Larson of Havre; sister-in-law, Ruth Springer of Havre; and many friends and relatives, including Bobbi and Larry Bowman of Troy, Con Lee of Libby, Gary and Betty Lee of Bigfork, Mike Lee of Libby, Mary Lee of Polson, Jan and Bob Thomson of Great Falls, and Myrni and Ken Daley of Somers.
The family suggests memorials be made to Kootenai Senior Citizens Center, P.O. Box 74, Troy, MT 59935, or St. John's Hospice, 350 Louisiana Ave., Libby, MT 59923.
Nelson and Vial Funeral Home in Libby is in charge of arrangements.