Graveside service for Lois Hopkins will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, July 22, 2023 at Boyes Cemetery, MT with a potluck lunch to follow at Boyes Community Hall, Hammond, MT.
Lois Lenore (Williams) Hopkins passed away on April 19, 2023 at Lasting Legacy with her daughter by her side. Lois was born in Broadus, Montana on October 23, 1925 to William Clinton and Annie (Smith) Williams. Lois was the 7th child out of 11 brothers and sisters. Lois grew up and spent the majority of her life in southeastern Montana. Lois' father passed away when she was 13 years old, so she worked for various ranchers in the area. She worked for her Aunt and Uncle Roy and Bessie Williams but enjoyed herding sheep For Manly Moore Sr and his wife the most. Lois also worked for various other ranchers in the area. Most of her brothers and sisters worked for other ranchers to help the family while some of her brothers were overseas during World War II. Lois was a very strong independent woman which a certain man came to admire.
On the 16th of December, 1947, Lois married Clarence Allen Hopkins. Their first home was a sheep wagon. From there they moved into a two-room house that once was once the Batzel post office. In 1949 Clarence and Lois purchased their ranch from her cousin Steven Williams and raised cattle together until their retirement and sale of their ranch in 1982. Clarence and Lois each had their own brand. One year they branded with Clarence’s brand. The next year they branded with Lois’s brand. Clarence and Lois were always equal partners in life and on the ranch. They sold the ranch to their friends and neighbors Richard, Clarice Owens and sons. Clarence and Lois began to look for a new place to live. They were more than welcome to stay on the ranch but they wanted a place where they weren’t snowed in for months at a time.
In June of 1984, they moved to Ekalaka, Montana. They enjoyed their time there where family and especially their friends Leslie and Nellie Dean would stop in for a game of cards, a cup of coffee and always Lois’s homemade cookies.
In December of 1996 Lois and Clarence moved into their new home in Gillette, WY to be closer to their daughter Gay, her husband John, and grandchildren Dixie and Danielle.
As always, they made new friends, particularly with their neighbors Curtis and June Gingery with whom they enjoyed many evenings’ playing cards.
On July 2, 2003 Lois' husband of 55 years, Clarence, passed away and she entered a new chapter in her life. In this new chapter her daughter Gay and granddaughter Dixie would take her to Club Energize where she did water aerobics. She enjoyed getting out and swimming again. Soon, Lois was driving herself there when Dixie and Gay couldn’t go.
In 2009, Lois had to have a total reverse shoulder replacement. The surgery lasted for hours and the recovery was hard for Lois, so John and Gay moved in to help and take care of her. They lived with her until December, 2020 when both John and Lois contracted Covid 19 and had to be hospitalized. Lois was slow to recover and went to rehab first in Broadus, MT then at Lasting Legacy in Gillette, WY. Gay, Dixie and Ziva tried to bring her home but felt that Lois wasn't strong enough to be alone when they were at work and school.
Lois moved to Lasting Legacy in spring of 2021 where she resided until her death. There she made new friends and loved participating in bingo and hymn singing. Lois became a favorite of the staff whom she enjoying telling stories of growing up and ranching with Clarence.
Lois is survived by her son Benjamin Clarence Hopkins of Ronan, MT, daughter Elaine Lenore (Hopkins) Dowdy(Larry) of Winslow, AR, daughter Gay Ann (Hopkins) Bitner of Gillette, WY, grandchildren Donald and Kim Dowdy of OK, Dixie Lewton-Bitner of Gillette, WY, Todd Bitner of MI, Michelle Bitner of MI, great-grandchildren Jonathan Dowdy of AR, Dakota Marssa of ND, Brenna Marsaa of ND, Blake Bitner of MI, Trent Bitner of MI, Haley (Bitner) Harris (Billy) of Okinawa, Japan, Ziva Lewton-Bitner of Gillette, WY, Dagan Dunbar, great-great grandchildren Jaeydn Dowdy of AR. Jackson Harris of Okinawa, Japan, many nieces and nephews. Several that called her grandma. Lois was preceded in death by her husband Clarence, her parents William and Annie, brothers William, Ira (Shorty), Roger, Hank, Benjamin, sisters, Isabelle, Annie, Betty, Helen, Emily, Son-in-law John H. Bitner III, granddaughters Danielle (Lewton) Dunbar and Gloria Marsaq.