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Bertha Wilma Bitz, 93, of Great Falls, died peacefully of natural causes on Dec. 12, 2009, at Northern Montana Care Center in Havre, Mont.

Bertha was born to Fred and Margaret Kiemele on their homestead west of Laredo, Mont., on May 18, l916. Her primary education was at the Pleasentview School a short distant from the farm, with secondary education in Box Elder. Upon her marriage to Daniel Bitz in 1936, the couple settled in Box Elder, where Daniel was a barber, and they farmed northwest of Box Elder. In l963, their partnership was dissolved, and in l969 Bertha moved to Tigurd, Ore., until 1972. She then moved back to Montana and settled in Conrad, close to her niece, Alice (Bartlett) Nelson and family. From 1982 to 1995 Bertha lived in the Centennial Lodge in Big Sandy. From l995 to 2002 she resided in Havre, Mont. Due to failing health she moved to the Rainbow Retirement Center in Great Falls and then to the BeeHive Home. Following a series of strokes, Bertha was moved back to Havre's Care Center to live out her final stay on this earth. Bertha's life revolved around homemaking and baking her delicious German coffee cake or Kuchen and homemade hot mustard for her family and friends. She also was a world traveler for many years. Wherever she went, Bertha made lasting friendships. Bertha is survived by her daughter, Lorraine (Dutch) Kube of Thermopolis, Wyo .; and her son, Alvin (Deanna) Bitz of Havre; six grandchildren, Robin Harris, Dawn Rice, Guy Harris, Vicki Ostrom, Danielle Bitz and Wade Bitz. Bertha is also survived by three special great-grandchildren, Shawnna and Eric Rice and Emma Bitz. Cremation has taken place and a formal interment is planned for the spring of 2010 in Havre. Memorials can be made to St. John's Lutheran Ministries Little White Church fund, 3940 Rimrock Road, Billings, MT 59102. Arrangements have been entrusted to Holland & Bonine Funeral Home of Havre. Condolences may be sent to the funeral home Web site http://www.hollandbonine. com


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