Doreen Kay Nerison was brought into the world on May 18, 1950, the youngest child of Kenneth and Verona Borgen.
Born in Yakima, WA, her family moved to North Dakota when Doreen was young. She grew up in Watford City, on the prairie country of Western North Dakota, where her fondest memories are of riding the badlands bareback.
She moved to Jamestown, ND in the 1970s where she met the love of her life, Tom Nerison. Married in 1977, they moved to Kalispell in 1981 where their daughter Jenny was born.
Doreen enjoyed motherhood very much, and chose to stay at home until Jenny started school.
When Doreen returned to work, her main objective was to work with youth in need. Through positions at Kalispell Schools and Western Montana Public Health she made many friendships in her community, and earned the love and respect of everyone she met, young and old. Doreen’s natural compassion and love for all people made her work with children deeply satisfying.
Doreen was exceptionally devoted to her family, they spent their free time hiking and skiing in the mountains. Doreen was very strong and completed many traverses and ascents in Glacier National Park. She could perfectly imitate the whistle of a marmot, and enjoyed calling to them while in the mountains. She was also an avid runner, and some of her closest friendships were with her running buddies.
Family outings to Fairmont Hot Springs BC, the Izaak Walton Inn, and the Bloomsday Race became family traditions. She and Tom searched for fairy slipper orchids every spring on the Sperry Trail and on Lone Pine. She was almost certain to meet people she knew any time she hiked Lone Pine; it was a special place to her.
When Jenny went off to college, Doreen got a little dog — a very lucky dog, who was pampered and showered with love and treats. Dogs became one of the many focuses of her love.
In her later years, Doreen developed some health problems and had to retire earlier than she would have liked to. She remained positive and continued to be as active as her body would allow. Her good humor was a constant, and her presence was one of the highlights of any family get together.
Doreen was always proud of her daughter Jenny, and was delighted when she married Robert Montague, and they gave her two wonderful grandchildren. Luca (8) and Bergen (4) made the last years of her life some of the best.
You could see an angelic smile come over her when she hugged them, which was nearly all the time.
Doreen remained a vibrant and vital part of her family until the end of her life. She and Tom celebrated their 40th Anniversary last May. Doreen helped her daughter with the Thanksgiving meal just a week before she developed the pneumonia that took her life.
Kalispell Regional Hospital provided expert care for Doreen and compassionate support for her family, but it was her time. Doreen passed away Dec. 6, 2018.
A celebration of her life will be held at 2 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 12, at Christ Episcopal Church.
Donations may be made to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Flathead County.