Floral 15

Edith Marlene Hanson

July 11, 1936 ~ August 21, 2022 (age 86)


Edith Hanson
Edith Marlene (Anderson) Hanson, 86 — known for her great cooking, humor, generosity and love of family — died Aug. 21, 2022, at Benefis Teton Medical Center, where she had resided in the long-term care wing since November 2021.
A viewing will be held on Aug. 25 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Gorder-Jensen Funeral Home in Choteau. Her funeral will be Aug. 26 at 10 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Choteau with burial in the Choteau Cemetery next to her husband and infant son. A reception will follow at the church.
“Edie” was born on July 11, 1936, in Choteau to Hans and Hilma Anderson, the youngest of their five children. Her older siblings were Herb, Jim, Beverly and Donny. The Andersons farmed at Collins before moving into town.
She grew up in Choteau, attended Choteau Elementary School and graduated from Teton County High School in Choteau with the class of 1954. At the age of 14, she started working as a soda jerk at the fountain in the drug store here to help contribute to the family’s income.
As a 16-year-old high school girl, Edie rode with her brother Donny to a community dance in Fairfield. There she met a dashing 26-year-old Pendroy farmer, Arnold L. Hanson. The two became a couple, and on July 18, 1954, they were married at Trinity Lutheran Church in Choteau just a week after she turned 18.
The couple moved to Hanson’s family homestead about six miles east of Pendroy. The little old homestead house wasn’t much to look at, but Edith and Arnold made it a loving and cozy home, adding on as their family expanded. They brought five children into this world, four of whom survived: Larry in 1955, Carlene in 1958, Sandy in 1962 and Dale in 1966. In 1957, they lost an infant boy who was stillborn.
She and Arnold always said their family was the best crop they ever raised.
On the farm, she was Arnold’s “right hand man,” driving grain trucks during harvest, raising pigs, helping move machinery and cooking wholesome hot meals that she delivered to the harvest field and served from the pickup tailgate. 
Edith was known for her homemade doughnuts and for her canning of fruit, vegetables and meat, her homemade jellies and jams, and her pies, especially the peach pies. She loved cooking and entertaining, and anyone who dropped by to visit would be treated to coffee and a homemade dessert at the least and likely a full-blown meal. She was a phenomenal cook who could pull a meal out of her hat, no matter how many extras showed up at the table.
While they lived on the farm, she was active in the Pendroy Social Club and the Pendroy Methodist Church. Her children remember Sunday afternoons when there was almost always company coming over to enjoy visiting, eating a great meal and maybe playing a few hands of cards.
During this time, she also volunteered as an election judge for the Pendroy voting precinct, helping with all the elections.
She and Arnold followed their children’s activities throughout their school years, putting many miles on their car as they went to home and away games that Carlene and Sandy cheered at, following the teams that Larry managed for, and attending music concerts and other school events. When their grandchildren started arriving, they gave them their full support as well.
When her own kids were in school, Edith loved a “snow day” as much as they did because they got to stay home with her. Her daughters and granddaughters remember having tea parties with her and her sons remember cozying around the old woodstove with her on cold nights.
She kept her house neat as a pin and the job she treasured most in life was being a wife to Arnold and a mother to her children. To set her apart from her mother-in-law, who went by “mom,” Edith went by “ma” to her children and “Waga” to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Arnold had his own special nickname for her, “Short.”
As her sons and daughters married, she welcomed their spouses into the family, getting two new daughters and two new sons out of the deal. She always had room in her heart for every new family member.
Edie wasn’t into material things, but placed a big emphasis on being a caring person, sharing whatever she had with others and raising a family where everyone was accepted and loved. Later in life, whenever her children or grandchildren would come by to visit, she would press a $5 bill in their hands and tell them to go get a treat, or she’d invite her granddaughters to pick out a piece of jewelry from her jewelry box. She was always trying to give something away or to share something she enjoyed. 
In 1997, after their son Dale took over the farm, Arnold and Edith began going “south” for the winter — they purchased a place in Choteau, about 25 miles south of the farm. In 1999, they moved to Choteau permanently and entered a new chapter in their lives as retirees. They enjoyed watching the cars go by from the front porch Sandy and her husband Ross Salmond built for them.
They were both active in the Choteau Senior Citizens Center, where Arnold delivered Meals on Wheels and Edith worked in the Cellarama second-hand store. They got together with friends there to play bingo and pinochle. Edith also enjoyed going to rummage sales and finding great buys.
They didn’t travel much except to visit their children. They took one family vacation to the Oregon coast and, after Arnold survived being struck by lightning in his yard, they attended four or five conventions of the Lightning Strike and Electric Shock Victims International organization.
Edie was tough as nails physically. She suffered from arthritis much of her life and had both of her hips and knees replaced, but instead of doing the replacements in four separate surgeries, she did both hips and then, after recovering, did both knees. Her surgeon said he never had another patient do this.
One of Edith’s favorite pastimes was reading history books, particularly about Montana history, the homestead era and the Great Depression. She also loved a good romance novel.
In 2009, Edith and Arnold moved in to the Skyline Lodge retirement home in Choteau. She greatly enjoyed sharing fresh peaches, a freezer full of ice cream bars and Christmas cookies with her neighbors and visitors. She made new friends there, including Steve Warren, who would bring her chicken wings and maple bars from Rex’s Market to share with her when he came to visit.
Her beloved husband died in 2011, and last November, after several falls, she moved into BTMC’s extended care wing, where she enjoyed reading, watching TV, socializing and visiting. After her vision failed earlier this year, she never complained but started listening to books on tape and vowed to keep the promise she made to Arnold to hang out on this earth until she was at least 85. It was a promise she would not break.
Edith was preceded in death by her husband and infant son, as well as all of her siblings, Herb Anderson, Jim Anderson, Beverly Anderson Luinstra and Donny Anderson.
She is survived by her children and their spouses, Larry and Robin Hanson of Aberdeen, South Dakota, Carlene and Tom Neal of Monmouth, Oregon, Sandy and Ross Salmond of Choteau and Dale and Frankie Hanson of Pendroy; her grandchildren, Chris Andreson, Chad Neal, Matthew Neal, Jim Salmond, Jeff Salmond, Chandler Salmond, Grace Hanson, Callie Hanson, Matthew Hanson and Tessa Hanson; her great-grandchildren, Lola Probst, Harlow Neal, Jace Salmond, Emmerson Neal, Bennett Salmond, Kooper Salmond, Beckhem Salmond and Lani Salmond; and many nieces and nephews.
She also leaves behind her dear friend, Steve Warren who became like another son to her.
Memorials are suggested to the Benefis Teton Medical Center Foundation, 915 Fourth St. N.W., Choteau, MT 59422.

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Funeral Service

Committal Service


August 25, 2022

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Gorder Jensen Funeral Home
23 Third Street NW
Choteau, Montana 59422

Funeral Service
August 26, 2022

10:00 AM
Trinity Lutheran Church
38 First Ave. SW
Choteau, Montana 59422

Graveside Service
August 26, 2022

10:45 PM
Choteau Cemetery
East of Choteau on Highway 221
Choteau, Montana 59422

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