All are invited to First Lutheran Church in Wolf Point, Montana to remember and celebrate the lives of Milton and Greta Monson, who shared 64 years together. The service will begin at 11 A.M. following a family graveside service for Milton who passed away on May 12th at the Billings Clinic. Greta died April 10th while staying at Faith Lutheran Home. The family would like to thank all the health care professionals at Faith Home, Trinity Hospital, and the Billings Clinic for their excellent care efforts. Special recognition is also due for Joann Martens for the care she gave to Milton and Greta from early 2013 until August of 2016.
Milton was born in Poplar, Montana June 1, 1927 to Oscar and Christine Monson. As a child he attended the Magnuson rural school in summers. He excelled in music and athletics at Poplar High School and graduated Valedictorian of the Class of 1945. Always a farmer, he did venture into the world by attending both Concordia College in Moorhead Minnesota and Northern Montana College in Havre. In early 1953 he went to the Lutheran Bible Institute Convention in Minneapolis where he met a beautiful young nurse named Greta Rose Heckler, daughter of Lawrence and Esther of Princeton, Minnesota. Born September 17, 1930, she too excelled in school, graduating Salutatorian of the Princeton High School Class of 1949. She had recently completed her RN degree at Fairview Hospital and was working at Minneapolis General Hospital during the polio epidemic. In what must have been a whirlwind courtship due to farming and nursing 700 miles apart, they were joined in marriage on October 2, 1953 and Greta left the forests and Land of 10,000 Lakes to essentially homestead on the treeless plains of northeast Montana. Before building their only home in Wolf Point in 1957, they lived on the family farm at Chelsea Creek.
Greta’s first love was music and she taught piano and played for churches and choirs as well as being the organist at First Lutheran for many years. After starting a family she returned to nursing at Trinity Hospital where she led both the surgery and nursing staffs for several years. Milton was a self taught genius and invented many machines and tools to make farming more efficient and productive. Milton recently remarked that he had never done anything great, but to all who knew him, he was always a very good man. Greta took special notice and concern for young people, both grandchildren and others, encouraging them during their formative education and early careers. Greta’s homemade quilts adorn all the family members’ homes and her chocolate chip cookies have become a family heritage.
We are all better because of marriages like the union and friendship of Milton and Greta Monson. They both exemplify loyalty and sacrifice; Greta in leaving everything to live with a farmer far away from where she grew up, and Milton especially in the past 10 years who cared for his ailing wife.
Milton and Greta are survived by their children Larry Monson (Lynne) and Rosanne Erickson (Doug), by grandchildren Jay Erickson (Loverty), Michelle (Monson) Nyhus (Chris), Jory Erickson, Erica (Monson) Hoagland (Jordan), and Evan Monson (Heather), and by great grandchildren Isabell, Adeia, and Olivia (Jay and Loverty), and Charlotte, Miles, and Alice (Michelle and Chris). Milton is also survived by his brother Clifton of Las Vegas and his three sons, Jimmy, Alan, and Steve. Greta is also survived by her niece Jerris Heckler and sister-in-law, Joan.
They were preceded in death by their parents, Milton’s sister Arlene, his sister in law Phyllis and niece Christie, Greta’s brother Jerry and his son Jay. Their beloved grandson, Brad Erickson, passed away on May 2nd, making the past month most tragic for the Monson and Erickson families.
In lieu of flowers please send memorial gifts to the Wolf Point Ministerial Association.
Jesus said a man and woman shall leave their parents and become one. Milton and Greta certainly did all of that and now are back together again sharing one of the rooms in the eternal mansion He said He would build for us all.