Ula Mae Carpenter Nov. 12, 1935 – July 25, 2021

SEELEY LAKE – On July 25 at 4:52 my brave, adventurous Mom lost her battle with dementia. She went quietly in her sleep at St. Pats in very good care.

Mom started her life in a small town in Iowa. They stayed within miles of there her whole life and we never strayed far from that central point for years.

She married Ernest "Mike" Carpenter on Jan. 16, 1955. They had four children in the next six years. She and my father built three different houses in three different places because...well, I don't know why.

In the late 70's, they made a trip out west during which they passed through Seeley Lake. I do not know the details but the result was they sold the most recently built home and bought a hunting cabin with a workshop and an outhouse. Dad was gonna sell wood to...somebody. Then the wood market went away so he and my mom drove semi for my aunt Ginny (Little Ginny Trucking).

After Dad died, she and her grandson Aaron drifted around for a while going from Iowa back to Seeley, to Iowa, to Las Vegas, Nevada and Grand Junction, Colorado, back to Iowa and finally returning to Seeley. They again settled in Seeley in the late 80's, early 90's. While she missed home, she loved it here. She made many friends over the years and worked in darn near every restaurant around here at the time. She had a quick sharp wit and could talk almost anyone into doing almost anything for her.

Her most favorite thing to do was go dancing. Anyone who went to the Wilderness back in the day knows that. It was true my whole life. She also loved hiking these mountains and driving down terrifying roads because she hadn't been there yet. She drove us all crazy and we will miss her forever.

Ula is survived by five children: Linda, Missoula, Montana; Mindy, Seeley Lake; Michael, Marshalltown, Iowa; Sharon, Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Susan, Lexington, Virginia.

There are also many grandchildren who spent summers and some winters here in Seeley. They all learned about firewood and the winter. Kids learned about getting water from town because the creek froze and how cold an outhouse is in the winter. There are also great grandchildren and even three great, great grandchildren. Shout out to her great grandson Tristan. Without his help I could not have done what we had to do.

She was preceded in death by her parents, all her siblings, her husband Mike, grandson Aaron and granddaughter Jennifer.

You are in good company now Ma. We love you and hope you are dancing in the sky.

There will be no service in Seeley Lake. She is being cremated and I will be taking her to Iowa to be buried next to Dad. The next time you dance like no one is watching, think of her or walking these beautiful trails, think of Ula for she is surely doing both.

Any cards may be sent to Mindy or Tristan Carpenter, 3956 Highway 83N, Seeley Lake, MT 59868.


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