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Dianne Messier – February 5, 2019

Tuesday, February 26th, 2019

Dianne Messier

December 30, 1952 – February 5, 2019

Dianne Kolste, the first child of Les and Gayle Kolste, was born in Conrad, Montana.   She would later be joined by three sisters:  Sandy, Leslie and Shirley.   We always called her Dee Dee.

The open spaces of Montana provided the perfect place for Dee Dee to spend her first years.   In a time when children were able to roam freely, Dee Dee, a fearless tomboy, made the most of it.    She dearly loved the farm where our dad was raised.   No matter the problem, with Dee Dee’s strong will, there was always a way.     She drove the farm’s pickup long before she could see where she was going.   I can still picture her. . . hands on the pickup’s steering wheel, body stretched out fully to reach the gas. . . head and shoulders just barely clearing the bottom of the wheel–blindly but confidently steering the pickup as I shouted directions from the passenger seat and our uncle tossed hay to the cows from the back.

A natural fisherman, Dee Dee developed a love of the sport when we were living in Choteau.   She looked forward to family get togethers with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.   Being outside was always the best:  swimming, hiking, ice skating, sledding, reading comic books while lounging on high limbs in tall trees and, when we lived in Plentywood, lying on the grass watching the magic of the Northern Lights against the darkness of the Montana sky.  Her experiences would leave her with an abiding love of family, friends and the great outdoors.

When conversations turned to what we wanted to do when we “grew up,” Dee Dee’s answer was always the same: “I am going to be a teacher.” It would be a very fitting occupation for Dee Dee, who had a lifelong love of learning.

Becoming a mother at a young age, Dee Dee’s life initially took her in other career directions, first in banking and then in agricultural real estate.   When her husband Jimmie and she moved to a ranch in Alturas, California, Dee Dee realized her childhood ambition of becoming a teacher when she accepted a position at Modoc High School.    Having a genuine compassion for her students and a driving ambition to give them skills that they could use to enhance their lives, she had been born to teach.  Her skills and talent were recognized when she received an award from the California State Superintendent of Schools. While living in Reno, she was able to once again teach, this time at Wooster High.  She thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

After she had been widowed too soon, even the eternally optimistic Dee Dee could not have predicted the next wonderful chapter of her life    When she met Roland Messier, it was an instant match.   It didn’t matter what they were doing . . . conducting a survey for Roland’s business . . . seeing the fjords of Norway . . .fishing at Frenchman Lake. . . they always enjoyed spending time with each other.   As Dee Dee liked to say, they were always up for their next adventure.  Roland and Dee Dee packed 40 years of living into the 16 years they spent with each other.

Dee Dee loved her three children, Jason, Heather and Nick.    More than once she said that, no matter how old your children are, you never stop worrying about them.   From birth to watching them take their first steps, to their earning their first drivers’ licenses, to seeing all of them become parents themselves … Dee Dee rejoiced in seeing them take life’s steps and reach their own milestones.

Dee Dee and Roland were wonderful grandparents to Shayna, Haley, Jamie, Wyatt, Jessie, Jewel, Ryan and Georgia.    Roland was the kind of grandpa who relished a ride on the highest water slide and Dee Dee was the kind of grandma who had just as much fun as the grandkids when watching movies, playing poker for Girl Scout Cookies, riding horseback, catching an Ace’s game . . . any of the activities that they all enjoyed together.  As her grandchildren grew into adults, Dee Dee remained their steadfast cheerleader, guide and friend.

Exceptionally organized, Dee Dee consistently had the type of self-discipline that most of us aspire to when making our short-lived New Year’s resolutions.  Homework as a child, taxes as an adult, household chores–all of life’s mundane activities were quickly and efficiently dispatched so that she could move on to more interesting things.    Over the years some of those things included traveling, dancing, skiing, boogie boarding, attending a myriad of concerts, horseback riding and camping.

Dee Dee’s good looks and sunny disposition often caused many people to underestimate her abilities.   Some of my favorite stories were told by her business colleagues where customers and other associates were surprised to discover that they were dealing with a person who was whip smart and who could more than stand up for herself—but always gracefully.

Sassy.  Beautiful.  Young-at-Heart.  Caring Educator.  Strong.  Loving. Radiant.  Joyful.  I can picture Dee Dee smiling when seeing all of the kind words that friends, former students and family have left on her behalf.

She leaves behind a lifetime of memories for her daughter Heather, sons Jason and Nick, grandchildren, family and friends.

Dee Dee, this isn’t good-bye.   We will all see you again.

 

 

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One Response to Dianne Messier – February 5, 2019

  1. Lori Silva-Avina

    Lori Silva-Avina

    Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 at 9:00 pm

    Beautiful 😍

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