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1934 Helen 2022

Helen Lorraine Cole

February 6, 1934 — March 11, 2022

Helen Lorain (Palmer) Cole passed away at age 88 on March 11, 2022 at the Village Health Care. She was born on Feb 6, 1934 in the house her father and grandfather had built by the Missouri River, 6 miles outside of Wagner, SD. The family farmed and raised dairy cows until they moved to Ronan, Mt when she was 12.

Helen attended and graduated grade school and high school in Ronan. On Sept. 9, 1952 she married her high school sweetheart, Frank Cole, while he was home on leave from the Navy and she lived in San Diego while he served. She moved back Mt. to live while pregnant with their first child while Frank was still in the Navy. Frank and Helen chose to live in Missoula after his discharge and had 3 children, Cynthia Cole, Neil Cole and Nancy (Cole) Mostad. Helen focused on raising their children and becoming an amazing homemaker. Our friends were neighbors and neighbors were friends in wonderful neighborhood community. She cooked 3 meals a day, baked all our bread, made jams, jellies, pickles and canned many fruits. She always had fresh cakes and her cookie jar was never empty. She taught herself how to crochet, knit and sew and sewed most of her daughters and her own clothes. Her favorite thing to do was make quilts and she always had at least 2 in the works and enough cloth to make a least a dozen more. She loved being a part of the wives group for the Missoula Police (Frank’s profession). Many hours were spent laughing and playing cards with dear friends and great lunches later in life.

In 1969 the family made a trip to Michigan to pick up their first camper and this was the beginning of Cole Campers. They continued to grow and expand the business and eventually moved it out to Momont Rd. Helen took night classes to learn how to do the books and ALWAYS balanced to the penny. She retired from Cole Campers in 1994.

Frank and Helen enjoyed camping, adventures and trips with their dear friends Frank and Gerry Featherman, Robert and Edna Sampson and especially with Frank’s brother and his wife, Jim and Lora Cole.

She was always helping others. Many quilts, afghans, casseroles, baked goods and canned goods were given to whoever needed them, but the coveted gifts were her dill pickles and her famous caramel cinnamon rolls.

She loved a good party with good food. You never went hungry at Helen’s house.

Helen was a member of the Alliance Church and attended her whole life until CoVid and then her body did not allow her too. She had many dear friends in the church and missed seeing them, especially her ladies lunch group. She also missed hearing the gospel and passed while listening to her favorite hymns.

Survivors include her children Cynthia Cole of Portland Oregon, Neil Cole of Missoula and Nancy (Gene) Mostad of Missoula. She loved spending time with family and you could always find a grandchild in her arms. Her grandchildren include Michelle (TJ) Arko, Kara (Jake) Foster, Tiffany Harris, Justin and Jeremy Cole and Loren (Janelle) and Lance (Rachel) Mostad, as well as 9 1/2 great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren she was unable to meet. There are also numerous nieces and nephews and many friends.

She is also survived by her sisters, Betty Kuntz, Jeanette Kuntz, and Barbara Burrell of Ronan. Preceding her in death were her parents Aaron and Mary Palmer, her husband Frank, her sisters Lucy Arlint, Rose McLeod, Laura Cook and Loretta Brower and her brothers Charles and Arnold.

Services will be held at Garden City Funeral Home on Fri, March 25th at 11:00am. After the service and luncheon, she will be interned at Sunset Memorial Gardens. If you would wish to make a donation in her name, some suggestions would be the Police Memorial at Rose Park and Partners in Home Care

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Helen Lorraine Cole, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, March 25, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Mountain time)

Garden City Funeral Home & Crematory

1705 W Broadway St, Missoula, MT 59808

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Sunset Memorial Gardens

7405 Mullan Rd, Missoula, MT 59808

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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