CHESTER - Mina May Thielman, 96, died peacefully in her sleep on Monday, June 2, 2003.

A funeral service will be Thursday at 2 p.m. at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Chester with burial following at the Chester Cemetery.

Mina was born in Mildred, Minn., to Claude and Ella Mae (Porter) Ames on May 23, 1907. When Mina was a child, her family moved to Hannah, Alberta, Canada, and she began her early education there. When she was 10, the family moved to Lothair, where her father operated a livery stable. She continued her schooling there, then transferred to Galata High School, where she completed her 10th-grade education.

Times were tough, so Mina took a job as a housekeeper for the F.A. Buttrey family in Havre and did some contract sewing in exchange for painting lessons.

Mina married Harold A. Thielman in Shelby on Nov. 24, 1925. They moved to Chester in 1928 and began renting a farm near Tiber. They eventually purchased their own land at Tiber and farmed until their retirement in 1972. They moved to Chester in 1977 and traveled to Arizona for five consecutive winters. After 61 years of marriage, Harold died in 1986.

Mina moved to the Sweetgrass Lodge in 1991. Two years later she fractured her hip and transferred to the Liberty County Nursing Home for extended care.

Mina was a longtime member of Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Chester and the affiliated circles and Bible study groups. She received her religious confirmation at the old German Lutheran Church in Rudyard in 1938.

Mina's hobbies included reading, especially her Bible, "Guideposts" magazine, cookbooks and other publications. She was an avid fan of Helen Steiner Rice poetry, but more importantly, she enjoyed composing her own poems. In addition to her skills as a seamstress, she enjoyed crocheting and made many doll clothes. She was an excellent cook and her family has fond memories of her candies, mints and decorated Christmas cookies. She enjoyed dancing, jigsaw puzzles, and collecting Lennox porcelain birds and lead crystal dishes.

Mina loved her family and doted over her grandchildren. She treated her in-laws with the same love and respect as she did her own children. She never meddled in their affairs and was always there if they needed help or advise.

Mina was preceded in death by parents; husband; sons, Dean, Charles and Dale; brothers, Earl, Claude, Edward and William; sisters, Ruth and Mable; one grandson; and one great-grandson.

Survivors include her sons, Gale (Ann) Thielman of Great Falls and Terry (Trina) Thielman of Chester; daughters, Eloise (Charles) Morehead of Tenino, Wash., Georgia Mondy of Idaho Falls, Idaho, Joanne (Wayne) Willman of Chinook, and Linda (Jim) Kathman of Great Falls; 20 grandchildren; numerous great- and great-great-grandchildren; brother, Jim Ames of Canby, Ore .; sister, Phyliss Wakefield of Beaverton, Ore .; and many nephews and nieces.

Memorials may be made to the Liberty County Nursing Home, Our Savior's Lutheran Church, or to the donor's choice.

Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel in Chester.


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