Seeley Swan Pathfinder -

Katherine Kay Kovatch 1955 ~ 2016

Swan Song


Katherine Kay Kovatch

MISSOULA - Katherine (Kathy or Katie) Kay Kovatch was born on Sept. 18, 1955 to Harry Neil Kovatch and Lois Mae (Henneman) Kovatch in Conrad, Mont. On Feb. 23, in the early morning hours at her home, Kathy entered into eternity, wrapped in the arms of Jesus and greeted by her parents. Kathy fought a battle with juvenile diabetes for 50 years and this day her battle finally ended. She is now resting in peace.

 Kathy was raised in the small, warm-hearted community of Valier, Mont. where she attended both grade school and high school, enthusiastically cheering on the Panthers! She also loved to sing in the choir and in a special singing group called the Wanderers. She used her singing talent to compete in the Junior Miss Competition; not winning, but coming home with the trophy for Miss Congeniality. This award fit her to a tee and that trait continued to shine throughout her life!

After high school she attended the Vo-tech in Helena earning her Practical Nursing Degree in 1975. Always a caregiver to one and all, this career seemed to be just the right plan for her. This vocation took her to Missoula to work at St. Patrick Hospital, a few nursing homes and she eventually retired from Western Montana Clinic in 2014. Retiring was very difficult for her because she was so sad to leave behind those she loved: her doctors, co-workers and "her" numerous patients. You filled her life with much joy.

 On Oct. 1, 1980, Kathy married Andy Sponseller. During their time together, she enjoyed traveling the United States for Andy's work, sailing at Flathead Lake and also in Belize. She brought home lots of stories of adventure and newfound friends. Eventually, they made their home in Missoula, Mont. where Andy had a welding business and Kathy went back to nursing. When Andy and Kathy went their separate ways, Kathy purchased her home on Curtis street.

 She soon met and fell in love with Will Mylander and his two beautiful daughters whom she adored. Will had been her constant companion, friend and caregiver and the one who kissed her cheek goodbye on the morning of Feb. 23.

 Kathy enjoyed an occasional book, movies and walks with Will and her dog Kramer, coffee with friends and planning parties and shenanigans. Her favorite thing in all the world was to call her family members and friends, especially her nieces and nephews just to catch up on their lives. Spending time and communicating her love to each of us was top priority.

Kathy spent Sunday mornings with her beloved church family at the Spirit of Peace Church where she was described as an "anchor" to their family. Kathy was a loving companion, mother, Grandma K, sister, aunt and friend. How blessed we all have been to have been loved by her.

 Survivors include: Will Mylander, of Potomac, Mont.; daughter Holly (Tom) Swenson and their children Hudson, Hamilton, Rangeley and Lander of Missoula, Mont.; daughter Deanna Mylander (Jeff Zwicker) and their daughter Keelia Zwicker of Ann Arbor, Mich.; Will's sisters Mary Ricard of Annapolis, Md., Matilda Mylander of Annapolis, Md. and Marta (Barth) Weinberg of Louisville, Ky.; brother Ken (Lorna) Kovatch of Ovando, Mont.; nephew Kory (Celeste) Kovatch and their children Kasen and Kinley of Valier, Mont.; nephew Kalvin (Karen) Kovatch and their children Klaire and Klayton of Seeley Lake, Mont.; niece Kelli (Jay D) Evans and their children Brinkley and Taylor of Valier, Mont.; brother Kevin (Christy) Kovatch and their children Kolby, Kelci and Kylie of Choteau, Mont.; sister Karalee (Wayne) Slaght of Ovando, Mont.; nephew Grant Slaght (Mary Delaney) and their children Brendan and Abby of Weatherford, Okla.; nephew Ben Slaght of Ovando, Mont.; niece Nicole (James) Bisom and their daughter Peiton of Big Timber, Mont.; her dog Kramer; her co-workers and her beloved church family.

 A memorial service was held at Garden City Funeral Home, Monday, Feb. 29 at 2 p.m. with Frank Matule officiating. A reception provided by the Spirit of Peace Church followed at the funeral home.

 Memorials can be given to the Juvenile Diabetes Association online at http//


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