By Alkali Springs Correspondent
This last week was such a beautiful one in the beautiful Bear Paws. It was like spring by the middle of each day and like winter each night. And, most of all, there was sunshine and moonlight and stars. Runoff is going into the ground, not down the creeks, thanks to the cold nights. It is doing the most good that it ever could. Nothing could be better for the country other than more snow, and most of us are thinking rain, if you please. However, we are quick to say we will take anything lest someone suggest a fair trial in the morning and hanging us in the afternoon for complaining about moisture.
We lost a very dear friend with the passing of Louise Wigmore. And the beautiful Bear Paws lost a friend as well, as did all of Havre. She never tired of extolling the virtues of both as much as she could.
Born here in Havre in 1902 as the youngest child of the illustrious Clack family, she saw every change in this part of the country from then until now. She talked to us recently about Long George Francis, Leonard Christler, Shorty Young and other Havre characters, and she remembered them just as if it were yesterday.
On Thursday, March 28, she would have been 100 years old. A big celebration would have been held with family and friends at the Northern Montana Care Center, where she had lived with her cat, Frankie, for the past few years. Instead, she fell last Saturday and broke her hip. She never came out of that injury.
Each time we saw her she did two things. She always asked how much water was in the creeks in the Bear Paws and had we seen any wildlife to tell her about since our last conversation? Later in the conservation she would admonish us to never forget our Presbyterian roots. She was the oldest member of First Presbyterian here in Havre and she often reminded us that our grandmother Lucke was also an old-time member of that church. So she would work hard to get us to give up on Brother Van's Methodists in Havre and come join the Presbyterians. "After all," she would say, "it's what your grandmother would want."
Well, we are still a Methodist. But we know one thing. We will surely miss Louise Wigmore, her thoughtfulness, her stories, her wise smile and her love for Havre and Havre people. One of the brightest stars in this part of the world has gone out. That makes us sad. But it would not bother her. She is off having more adventures.
So long, Louise.