Just five days before her 93rd birthday, Marie (Belinski) Basaraba was freed from years of physical pain and agony. Marie peacefully passed away on Sept. 5, 2017, in Whitefish.
Visitation will be from 2 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 12, at Johnson-Gloschat Funeral Home in Kalispell, before Marie journeys to North Dakota. The Divine Liturgy in Belfield, North Dakota will be celebrated by Father Yurii Sas at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept.16, at St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church. Interment will follow at St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Ladbury Funeral Service, with a rosary recitation by William Belinski, and Parastas cantered by Gerry Grosulak at 7 p.m. Visitation will continue one hour prior to Divine Liturgy at the church on Saturday.
The third child of Nick and Paraska (Haverlock) Belinski, Marie was born in Gorham, North Dakota, on Sept. 10, 1924. Like her mother, Marie became an excellent cook and baker.
At the age of 16, Marie married Sam Basaraba in Terry, Montana, on Oct. 31, 1940. Marie worked tirelessly as they ranched and farmed north of Belfield, as well as ventured to Eugene, Oregon, to work in the logging industry. After moving to Dickinson, North Dakota, Marie worked as a meat wrapper for many years, and then managed the bakery at the Red Owl store. Marie had a reputation of being known as a hard worker with a very strong work ethic. Marie valued independence, education and being of service to others. Marie worked, and took care of others whether she was in pain, or not.
Sam and Marie had four children, Eugene (Joanne) Basaraba of Elko, Nevada, Julianne Basaraba of Kalispell, Betty (Fred) Haas of Columbia Falls, and Loree (Oleh) Ivanets of Dickinson.
Despite working outside of the home for the majority of her life, Marie’s organizational skills allowed time for her to relax and enjoy her talents of sewing, gardening, cooking, baking, crocheting and embroidery. Many homes in North Dakota and Montana have been graced with creations of her handiwork — especially Ukrainian embroidery and beautiful crocheted afghans.
In 1979, Marie left her beloved North Dakota prairies, and began another chapter of her life to be near her children in the majestic mountains of Northwestern Montana. She moved to Bigfork and eventually settled in Columbia Falls.
While residing in Columbia Falls, Marie was instrumental in the formation of the musical group, the Troubadours, as she loved music and singing. Marie had an infectious smile, a sweet sense of humor, and natural leadership abilities. She was extremely active in the Columbia Falls Senior Citizen Center, and brought an art to volunteering through her many years of dedication with the Retired Senior Volunteer Program of Flathead County. Despite the distance, Marie was an avid supporter of the Ukrainian Cultural Institute, and kept in touch with many close friends and relatives in North Dakota.
Marie’s love for the Ukrainian culture was evident by her passing on the timeless Ukrainian traditions of Christmas Eve supper and Easter to her children and eight grandchildren, Darrin Basaraba and David (Carla) Basaraba of Elko, Michelle (Brandon) Rigby and Coby Haas of Fairbanks, Alaska, Candace (Carson) Zumalt of Red Bluff, California, Jeremy (Brianna) Thompson of Colorado Springs, Colorado, Alexis Basaraba-Thompson of Dickinson, and Elizabeth Gawryluk of Bismarck, North Dakota. Marie is survived by her children, grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
Marie’s siblings were very dear to her, as they were part of her support system through the years. She is survived by her sister, Marcella (Vic) Paluch of Los Angeles, and her brother, William (Lori) Belinski of Billings; and many nieces and nephews.
Marie was preceded in death by her sister Pauline Tabatt, brother Sam Belinski, and her parents.
Pallbearers are Fred and Coby Haas, Jeremy Thompson and Oleh Ivanets.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Ukrainian Cultural Institute, and the North Dakota Ukrainian Dance Association in Marie’s eternal memory.
Johnson-Gloschat Funeral Home is caring for the family.