Betty Lou (Nemec) Chester, 84

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Betty Lou (Nemec) Chester, 84, died Sept. 3, 2018, in Kalispell.

Born Dec. 28, 1933, in Great Falls to John Nemec Jr., and Mary Saksa Nemec (Blumer). Betty graduated from Great Falls High School in 1952.

One of Betty’s favorite jobs was probably her first one working as a caller and cashier at a lemonade stand at the Montana State Fair in Great Falls when she was 14! This was a job that continued many summers, years later also serving as a first job for three of her four children. Betty also worked as a dime store clerk, theater ticket taker, and bank teller; once a man presented a note to Betty asking her to “Give me all your green,” which she did immediately, thinking the thing in his pocket was a gun. Having quickly pushed the panic button, Betty was not surprised that the police arrived to arrest this bank robber who, as it turns out, had no gun, but only a comb in his pocket!

Creative in many areas going all the way back to doing the art for her high school yearbook, Betty enjoyed working at Electric City Conser-vatory, Fritz Roll & Sons Flowers, and Irene’s Crafts and Hobbies, all in Great Falls. It was later in life that Betty discovered her talent and passion for painting, winning many awards at the Montana State Fair and honoring her friends and family with her amazing work. Two Montana painters Betty especially loved the work of were Charles M. Russell and Elliot Eaton.

In 1956, Betty married Steven D. Chester (later divorced); they had four children, all of whom survive her, Denise Houtz of Kalispell, Victoria (Douglas) Stamp of Bremerton, Washington, Michael (Donna) Chester of Costa Mesa, California, and Bruce (Enrique Aguilera) Chester of Seattle. Other survivors include her sister, Phyllis (Albert) Hulquist, of Spokane, and many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and nieces.

Whether it was painting, working in a hobby store, as a Realtor, or as a florist, knitting, sewing, or making a beautiful home, Betty found time to take her four children on adventures that included RV fishing trips, sapphire-digging trips, national park and ocean visits.

A celebration of Betty’s life will be held at a later date.

Johnson-Gloschat Funeral Home is caring for the family.

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