Gerry Lu Isbell

September 17, 1927 ~ November 6, 2022 (age 95) 95 Years Old


Gerry Lu ‘Olsen’ Isbell passed away November 6, 2022, at the age of 95 surrounded by her family at Livingston Health Care. She was born at the family home on South D Street in Livingston on September 17, 1927, to William Lewis ‘Butch’ and Beah (Cole)Olsen joining her brother Jack.


She attended East Side Grade School, Lincoln Jr. High, and Park High School, graduating in 1945. She always told us that during the depression and WWII years that her family life was better than lots of families because her dad had a good steady job working for the Montana Power Co. She attended the University of MT in Missoula for 1 semester then worked in Livingston before attending Comptometer school in Spokane WA. She then worked in the offices of the Northern Pacific Railroad in Livingston.


She and a friend were going to the White Sulphur Springs Rodeo in her Red Convertible. They stopped in Wilsall, and some Cowboys jumped in the car with them, one of them being Virgil Isbell. They were married April 3, 1949, and moved to Virgil’s family ranch on Flathead Creek west of Wilsall. She always said she had never been off the pavement and had a lot to learn but became the other half of a very successful Registered Hereford Ranch. They had four children: Loren, Wade, Shelley, and Garth. She had a large garden and chickens and washed a cream separator for 40 years. She liked reading and enjoyed reading the newspapers and the many magazines she subscribed to. They worked the ranch together until Virgil’s death in 2006. Mom was able to live in her home at the ranch until her passing.


She was very active in the Park-Gallatin Hereford Auxiliary, the Montana Hereford Auxiliary, the park County Cowbells, The Sedan Community Club, The Wilsall Homemakers Clever Click Club and a long-time member of the Shields River Lutheran Church and the Church’s women’s organizations.


Gerry Lu is survived by sons Loren (Shirley) of Veteran, WY, Wade (Sue) of Solen, ND, Garth (Robbie) on the family ranch at Wilsall, and daughter Shelley (Jay) Bailey Clyde Park. Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren: Camri (Ken) Piwarski and Kolin (Jenica), Blake (Kacey) Isbell and Kinley and Mckenzie, Jerid (Tobey) Isbell and Lezlee, Colt and Tucker, Cash (Rachel) Kash, Kaenee, Kalelyn, and Sutton. Chance (Sandy) Isbell and Ridge. Kira (Nick) Jerke and Kyle and Asha, step grandson Joshua Bailey and Mia, Mariesa Isbell and Kasen. Also, sister-in-law Joan Roth, her niece and nephew Holly Olsen and (Cj) Wallington, and Roger (Donna) Olsen and several other nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband Virgil, her parents and brother and his two wives, Clara and Agnes, and great granddaughter Kalea Piwarski, also cousins that were like brothers to her Bob and Jim Cole.

A celebration of her life will be held June 3rd, 2023, at 11:00am at the Shields River Lutheran Church in Wilsall, Mt. Memorials sent to Shields River Lutheran Church would be appreciated. A luncheon will follow the service.



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Celebration of Life
June 3, 2023

11:00 AM
Shields River Lutheran Church
105 S Ordway Street
Wilsall, MT 59086
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