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Irene Marie (Conroy) Christianson

August 29, 1944 September 16, 2019
Irene  Marie (Conroy) Christianson
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Obituary for Irene Marie (Conroy) Christianson

Irene Marie (Conroy) Christianson passed away suddenly on September 16, 2019, at her home in Great Falls. A vigil will be held at 6:30pm on Tuesday, September 24, at O’Connor Memorial Chapel. A funeral mass will be held at 12:00pm on Wednesday, September 25, at St. Ann’s Cathedral in Great Falls, followed by a Rite of Committal at Mt. Olivet Cemetery.

Irene is survived by her husband, Jim; daughter, Kelli (Luke) MacDonald; granddaughters, Abigail and Bree of Great Falls; brother, James Conroy of Great Falls; daughters-in-law, Tana (Heath) Schmidt of Billings and Amy Elise (Colton) Yost of Phoenix, AZ; step grandchildren, Danyelle and Brenden of Billings, Delaney of Maryland, and Arianna and Cole of Phoenix, AZ. She is also survived by numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents and sisters, Marilyn Hogan and Kathy Matson.

Irene was born the second of four children in Glendive, MT, on August 29, 1944, to Matthew “Bud” Conroy and Margaret Irene (MacDonald) Conroy (and later step-mother Margaret Conroy). She grew up in Sidney, MT, and graduated from Sidney High School in 1962. She moved to Great Falls to attend the College of Great Falls. Upon her mother’s passing during her first year of college, Irene returned to Sidney to care for her younger siblings. A year later, the family moved to Great Falls where Irene continued her education, graduating with a degree in Social Work.

Irene began working as a social worker for the State of Montana in 1967, working in various capacities for over 35 years. Her first caseload was in family services, followed by child protective services, then sexual abuse, and culminating in services to the developmentally disabled. She was fearless and unrelenting in her advocacy for children and adults. She retired in 2004.

Jim and Irene were married on December 30, 1992. They met at a branding in Denton, MT, and built their life together in Great Falls. They both enjoyed spending time with their families. Jim was quite understanding as Irene came home with various finds from her garage sale Saturdays. Many of these items were to help her clients set up their lives and homes, although many treasures found their way home with Irene, too.

Irene joined the steering committee of St. Ann’s Soup Kitchen early in 2005. The first meal was served on September 16, 2005, and meals are still served every Friday. She served on the committee and volunteered at the Soup Kitchen for over 10 years.

In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Irene Christianson can be made to the St. Ann’s Soup Kitchen. Condolences may be shared with the family online at www.OConnorFuneralHome.com.


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Previous Events

Vigil Service

Tuesday

24

Sep

6:30 PM 9/24/2019 6:30:00 PM
O'Connor Memorial Chapel

2425 8th Avenue North
Great Falls, MT 59401

O'Connor Memorial Chapel
2425 8th Avenue North Great Falls 59401 MT
United States

Funeral Liturgy

Wednesday

25

Sep

12:00 PM 9/25/2019 12:00:00 PM
St. Ann's Cathedral

715 3rd Avenue North
Great Falls, MT 59401

St. Ann's Cathedral
715 3rd Avenue North Great Falls 59401 MT
United States

Memorial Contribution

St. Ann's Soup Kitchen

715 3rd Avenue North
Great Falls, MT 59401
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