Beverly Jean Donaldson

Heaven’s draperies and angel gowns have likely taken on a fresh, new look as God’s master seamstress arrived on the scene on Dec. 20, 2019. Beverly Jean Thompson Hart Donaldson was born on March 8, 1936 at a mere 3 lbs. 6 oz. Her parents, Tilford and Earlene Thompson, were told to take a good look because Bev wasn’t going to make it. But she proved them wrong and went on to live a full and productive life up until recent weeks when mesothelioma took its final toll. 

Bev grew up in Cut Bank, Mont. and was raised by Frank and Earlene Hart, along with her brother Don. After high school, she attended college in Bozeman where she was actively involved and graduated with a degree in Home Economics in teaching. 

After graduation, she and college beau Gene Donaldson were married Dec. 28, 1958. Bev taught at Helena Junior High for one year until the arrival of their son David. Later Bev and Gene welcomed two more children, Denise and Colleen.

Bev was Gene’s business partner on their ranch in the Helena valley where the city girl got an education on farm/ranch life. 

After Gene’s death in 1987, she completed Gene’s term in the Montana House of Representatives, sold the ranch, worked for various businesses and did elder care. Bev gave in gigantic proportions to her friends, family, and community. 

Bev was welcomed into heaven by her Savior, her parents, stepfather and husband Gene.

Survivors include her children: Dave (Brenda) Donaldson, Denise (Ron) Johnson, and Colleen (Ron) Howell, and her  grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Katy and Jessica Donaldson; Tucker, Mica, Leena, and Leila Johnson; Kassi, Lucas, Kyrstan, Finnigan, Irene, and Tilly Jack, Joshua Johnson; Anthony, Katie, Weston, Barrett, and Colter Howell; Jacob, Heather, Lola, and Lilly Howell; Samuel Howell and fiancé Morgan Carlstrom; and Joshua and Jana Howell, siblings Don (Peggy) Hart, Steve (Carol) Thompson, Tom Thompson, Jeanette (Dennis) Thorp, and Nancy (George) Von Arx and their families; her in-laws, Pat and Tom Herrin and their families; and god-children Heather LaCotta and Scott and Derek Baum. 

Viewing was held Friday, Dec. 27 at Anderson Stevenson Wilke Funeral Home, 3750 N. Montana Ave in Helena. 

Funeral service was held on Saturday, Dec. 28 at First Presbyterian Church, 535 N. Ewing St in Helena. A reception followed the service in the fellowship hall of the church. Burial took place following the reception at Forestvale Cemetery in Helena.

Please visit to offer the family a condolence or share a memory of Bev.