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Anna Ruth Graham Houlton

Anna Ruth Graham Houlton

Anna Ruth (Philippi) Graham Houlton, 88, of Havre, Mont., a retired entrepreneur, died Oct. 8, 2011. Her viewing will be held 2 to 4 p. m. on Thursday, Oct. 13, and 10 a. m. to 4 p. m., Friday, Oct. 14. Her funeral service will be held at the 5th Avenue Christian Church, Saturday, Oct. 15, 2011, at 11 a. m., followed by burial at Highland Cemetery.

A lunch reception will be held at the church immediately following. Memorials may be made in honor of Ann to Care and Comfort, attention April Custer, 1204 Cleveland Ave., Havre, MT 59501, or your charity of choice. Services and arrangements have been entrusted to Holland & Bonine Funeral Home.

Ann was born on March 29, 1923, to Roscelia and Ferdinand Philippi in Box Elder, Mont. Although her early years were spent there, Havre was truly her home from 1937 to 2011. She moved to Great Falls in 1942 to work at Montgomery Ward, and soon after met Hugh Graham. They were married in Great Falls on June 2, 1943. After Hugh's discharge from the Air Force in 1946, they returned to Havre. Ann and Hugh spent 23 years of marriage, creating a wonderful life and family. Hugh passed away in 1966. In 1969 Ann married Harold Houlton. Their 18 years of marriage was focused around their life residing at Fort Assinniboine's experiment station. This brought many years of joy having family and friends visit. They were founding members of Ag Wise Inc. and other business ventures.

Ann focused on creating opportunities for her and her family. Her professional career started at Patterson's and Marguerite's. Ann later created several successful businesses, including Ruth Ann's, A&H Fashions and Classic Ceramics. Ann was an active member of Business and Professional Women for many years and served a term as president. Ann's commitment to family, Havre's business community and her many friends was demonstrated through service, time and resources. She was an active member at church and was a Stephens Lay Minister.

Traveling to see relatives and friends was her focus and joy. She always felt free when driving down the highway. She demonstrated her love of friends and family by attending their celebrations, solace and visits. Travels with friends and family to Ireland, Scotland, Hawaii, Norway or simply the annual Hostfest brought joy to her life.

Ann is survived by her four children, Ruth Evans of Havre, Hugh Graham of Billings, Ginney Gaschk of Helena, and Sherry Graham of Denver; daughter-in-law, Mary Graham; sons-in-law, David Evans and Walter Gaschk; brothers, Roger Philippi, Les Philippi, Donald Philippi; sisters, Evelyn Enochson, and Alvera Wickstrom; her four step children, Chris, Wendy, Robin and Michael Houlton; nine grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; and 30-plus nephews and nieces.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husbands, Hugh and Harold; brother; Leo Philippi; sister, Erna Evins; two grandchildren, David Evans Jr. and Brian Evans; and one great-grandchild, Travis Bunnell.


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