Clarice Doreen Fitzpatrick

Clarice Doreen Fitzpatrick, 71, of Valier passed away at home on June 24 after a battle with lung cancer.

She was born in Great Falls, on Oct. 20, 1942, to the late Clarence and Eleanor Swanson. Clarice was raised on the family’s farm outside of Valier surrounded by generations.  Her grandparent’s running the Johnson Dairy and her parents raising cattle and growing crops.  As a child, Clarice learned to gently gather eggs and whistle when she fed the chicks to quite them so they wouldn’t be scared. Clarice graduated from Valier High School. She was married to David Fitzpatrick on Sept. 24 and shared 51 years of life together, most of the time in the company of each other.  

Clarice and family lived in Conrad, she working for the Production Credit Association and raising their two daughters.  She enjoyed supporting her girls in Girl Scouts, family camping trips, bowling, playing pinochle, counted cross stitch, and most of all taking care of her family.  In 1984, Clarice and Dave moved to their cabin in Coram.  They hand built their log home in the woods while both working at Kalispell Regional Hospital.  She worked in housekeeping, but never minded when the nurses asked for an extra set of hands to rock new born babies.  In 1997, they moved back to Valier when David retired.  Always wanting to be active, Clarice worked at Curry’s Grocery for years.  This final move also allowed her to be close to her aging mother.  She was always a caretaker at heart.

Clarice is survived by her husband David; two children; Doreen (Robert) Lightner of Conrad; and Tammy Fitzpatrick of St. Charles, Mo.; her brother Don (Verna) Swanson of Kodiak, Alaska; her sister-in-law Barbara Fitzpatrick of Conrad; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Per Clarice’s wishes cremation was performed, and a small family gathering to celebrate her life was held on June 27.  Her ashes will be spread at a later date high atop a hill overlooking the Dry Fork, with the Rocky Mountains in the background.  

Memorials may be made to Pondera Medical Center Home Health, P.O. Box 668, Conrad, 59425.


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