Swan Songs - January 2009
Eleanor Fannie “Scottie” Cooley
Eleanor Fannie “Scottie” Cooley, 84, of Victor passed away Friday, December 19, 2008 at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula. She was born June 18, 1924 in Tunkhannock, PA the daughter of Caryle and Beatrice Page.
Eleanor graduated from Brooklyn High School in Pennsylvania. She married Donald Cooley on October 17, 1943. Eleanor had many varied interests throughout her life and wore many different hats; wife, mother, rancher, airplane builder during wartime and volunteer at the Daly Mansion. She was a Seeley Lake Campground host and enjoyed fishing, camping, traveling, cooking and lived her life to the fullest.
Eleanor had friends all over the United States.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and 2 brothers, Caryle, Jr. and Thomas Page. Eleanor is survived by 4 sons, Donald Cooley II of Bremerton, WA, Bill Howey of Oregon, ILL, Rick Cooley of Madera, CA and Bob Cooley of Spokane, WA; 2 daughters, Sara Essick of Victor, MT and Lisa Mosbrucker of Corvallis, MT; 16 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.
Funeral services were held on Monday, December 29, 2008 at Daly-Leach Chapel with Pastor Mick Gray officiating. Burial followed at the Victor Cemetery in Victor, MT.
Pallbearers were her sons, Don Cooley, Bill Howey, Rick Cooley, Bob Cooley, grandson, Don Cooley III and her son-in-law, Terry Essick.
The family suggests that memorials be made in Eleanor’s name to the Bitterroot Valley Living Center in Stevensville, MT. Arrangements are under the care of the Daly-Leach Chapel.

Ralph Henry Prazak, Sr.
Ralph Henry Prazak, Sr., of Seeley Lake, passed away unexpectedly of natural causes on, December 13, 2008 at the age of seventy.
Ralph was born on December 16, 1937 in Chicago, Illinois. He enlisted in the US Marines on July 30,1956 and was discharged on July 29, 1958. After his discharge, Ralph began his career in carpentry and soon after married Darlene Palecek. Ralph and Darlene had four children together who all later relocated to Montana.
In 1991, Ralph relocated to Montana to be closer to his four children and grandchildren who were beginning to arrive. He very much enjoyed the time he spent with his grandchildren, including playing in the sandbox, and stories of them always put a smile on his face. He also enjoyed the company of his four dogs. His dogs were his constant companions and he enjoyed taking walks with them behind his home in Seeley Lake.
Along with this love of carpentry, Ralph was a wonderful artist. He expressed his talent though painting and wood carving. His expertise and attention to detail is shown in the numerous miniature carvings which he created throughout his life. Those works of art will be cherished in remembrance of him.
Ralph is survived by three daughters, Susan Cantrell of Missoula, Karen Prazak of Missoula, Sandy Cahoon (Wayne) of Seeley Lake, and his son Ralph Prazak, Jr. of Missoula.
He has seven grandchildren Wyatt, Steven and Shania all of Missoula and David, Chelsea, Christian and Joshua all of Seeley Lake. He also has a sister Roberta (Ed, deceased) Zeman and brother Howard (Joan) Prazak of Chicago, Illinois and numerous nieces and nephews and extended family and friends all in Illinois.
Per his wishes, Ralph was laid to rest at Woodlawn Cemetery in Forest Park, Illinois with his parents Henry and Johanna who preceded him in death.
A memorial service will be held in Seeley Lake on a date not yet determined.

William Julius Moderie
William Julius Moderie, of Missoula, died Wednesday, January 7, 2009, at Community Hospital of natural causes at the age of 56.
He was born Sept. 10, 1952, in Missoula to Joseph F. Moderie and Elizabeth R. Beccari Moderie. His large family allowed for many adventures as he grew up. Countless hours were spent playing basketball in the driveway, fast-pitch whiffle ball, street football and working at the family wood products business.
William graduated from Hellgate High School in 1971.
He married the love of his life, Lorelei Kill on April 8, 1989.
His favorite hobby was woodworking; “the shop teacher” was always helping someone with a project. Bill loved to play cards, and cribbage was his game. He loved family camping trips and horseshoes, played co-rec softball for many years, enjoyed all sports, loved to cook and was also an avid Green Bay Packers fan.
“Big Bill” was a gentle soul with a kind heart. He could connect with everyone young and old; he had a knack of making you feel comfortable and was just our big teddy bear.
William was a loving father, son, husband, brother and uncle who loved spending time with his children and family. He especially loved watching his children participate in sporting events.
William was preceded in death by his wife, Lorelei; and his parents, Elizabeth and Joseph. He has gone to a far better place to be reunited with his soul mate.
Survivors include his children, Rebekah, Maria and Jacob; nine brothers, Donald, Kenneth, Ronald, Daniel, Michael, Charles, Nicholas, Joseph and John; four sisters, Betty Jo Baker, Marianne McCracken, Nancy Haniszewski and Marchita Mays; many nieces and nephews; and many other relatives.
A memorial service was held January 12, with services held January 13 at St. Anthony Parish with the Rev. Gary Reller officiating.
The family suggests in lieu of flowers contributions be made on behalf of William’s children to the William Moderie Memorial Fund at Missoula Federal Credit Union.

Becky Coldiron
Becky Coldiron, a former resident of Helena and Placid Lake, passed away on December 12, 2008 in Kerrville, Texas.
She was born in Wurtland, Kentucky on January 3, 1919, the daughter of Congressman Joe Bates.
In 1943 she married an attorney, Shannon Vinson and had 3 daughters, Randall, Carol Brooks and Joey. She was widowed in 1963.
She taught English, Algebra and German in Greenup County schools for many years and also served as librarian and guidance counselor.
In 1987 she married her high school sweetheart, William H. (Bill) Coldiron, and moved with him to Helena, Montana.
In these golden years Becky attended the First Presbyterian Church in Helena and Mountain Lakes Presbyterian Church in Seeley Lake.
When Bill passed away in 2005, Becky moved South to be closer to her daughters and divided her time between Oxford, Mississippi and Comfort, Texas.
She is survived by her daughters, Randall Borden of Houston Texas, Carol Brooks Flynn of Atlanta Georgia and Joey Story of Comfort Texas, and 3 stepchildren, Steve Coldiron of Billings, Margaret (Jiggs) Coldiron of Placid Lake & London, England and John Coldiron of Burbank California as well as 3 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren and 6 step-grandchildren.
A memorial service was held in December in Texas and another will be held at Placid Lake in the summer.

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