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Avalon Marie Fuller Billquist was born in Spokane, WA on September 7, 1926. She passed away on October 10, 2023, at Ruby Valley Hospital in Sheridan, MT. Avalon was the oldest of four children born to Margaret Barrett and Lyle Fuller. She grew up in Mill Creek under the shadow of the stack.
Her parents were the leaders of the first 4-H club in Deer Lodge County when Avalon was in 9th grade and 4-H remained a big part of her life. She graduated from Anaconda Senior High School in 1944 and then attended summer school at The Normal School, now U of M Western in Dillon, and received an emergency teaching certificate. She began her teaching career at Finn MT, teaching grades 1-8 in a one room schoolhouse. She was 17 turning 18 one week later. She retired after teaching for 34 years.
She met her future husband, Ole Billquist at Finn. They dated for 8 years, marrying on February 6, 1951, when Ole was on leave from the Army. They were married 60 years before Ole passed away in 2011. Avalon and Ole moved to Mill Creek in 1954 where they raised their four children, Jerry, Marty, Peggy, and Sandy in the log home they built. In 1988, they were forced to leave their beloved Mill Creek moving to Galen Road. Avalon loved the views from her new home, but it wasn’t Mill Creek. Avalon’s family meant everything to her and she was proud of each of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Avalon and Ole were very active in the Grange. Avalon received her 75 year membership pin 2 years ago. The Grange provided numerous opportunities for the whole family. Avalon served as State Grange Junior Matron for many, many years and National Grange Advisory Committee for 6 years.
Avalon opened a ceramic shop in the 60’s and provided classes until she retired around 5 years ago.
Avalon was preceded in death by her parents, Margaret and Lyle Fuller; husband, Ole Billquist (2011); siblings, Adell “Babe” and her husband, Verl Johnson, Mick and his wife, Lois Fuller, and Ron Fuller; and son-in-law, Dave Morley (2020).
She is survived by her son, Jerry and Bonnie Billquist, and their sons, Dan (Jodi) (great grandsons, Cameron and Evan), and Rob (Amanda); son, Marty and Joyce Billquist, and their daughter, Jessie (Doug Sather) (great grandchildren, Jaycee, Cody, Justin, Tucker, Jerzey and Jake); daughter, Peggy and Larry Ohman, and their children, Erica (Chris Worden) (great grandchildren, Avalon and Axel), Kelsey (John Mitchell) (great granddaughter, Sawyer), and Adam; and daughter, Sandy Morley, and her children, Jeromy (Shannon) (great grandchildren, Arianna, Bethany, and Roman) Amanda Morley (Trent Crismore) (great grandchildren, Kimberlie, Tucker, and Dalton).
In lieu of flowers, memorials in honor of Avalon are suggested to the Avon Grange #125, C/O Nancy Hartla PO Box 1367, Anaconda, MT 59711, OR Deer Lodge County 4-H Council, 811 E Park, Anaconda, MT 59711, OR Tri County Fair, PO Box 149 Deer Lodge, MT 59722, OR a charity of the donor’s choice.
A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, October 17, 2023, at Longfellow Finnegan Riddle Funeral Home Chapel, 107 Oak St., Anaconda, Montana, 59711. A graveside service will follow at approximately 12 p.m. at the Avon Cemetery, 298 Old Avon (Hwy) Rd., Avon, MT, with a luncheon to follow at the Avon Community Clubhouse, on Main Street in Avon.
Please visit the sidebar to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of Avalon.
Longfellow Finnegan Riddle Funeral Home and Cremation Services along with Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services have been privileged to care for Avalon and her family.
Avon Grange Memorial Fund c/o Nancy Hardtla
P.O. Box 1367, Anaconda MT 59711
Deer Lodge County 4-H Council
811 E. Park St., Anaconda MT 59711
Tri County Fair
PO Box 149, Deer Lodge MT 59722