Ellen Knox Fleming

1921 – 2013
Ellen Knox Fleming
Ellen Knox Fleming


Ellen Knox Fleming  was born May 22, 1921, to William D. and Ethel A. Knox, homesteaders on Sage Creek near Dell, and attended the one-room schoolhouse in Dell that is now The Yesterday’s Cafe.  She graduated from Beaverhead County High School in Dillon in 1939.

Ellen was a delight to all who knew her.  Despite all her many losses over the years, she maintained a positive outlook on life and a really keen sense of humor.

Ellen married Thomas James (Jim) Carpita in 1940. One of her memories of Jim is when they lived in a boxcar next to the railroad tracks. They had three sons: James; David; and John. Jim died Aug. 17, 1946, two weeks before John was born. Ellen and the three boys lived in Dillon after his death.

On May 4, 1957, Ellen married Leo C. Flint and they moved to Helena. Leo worked for the Forest Service. To this union two sons were born, Dale Patrick and Gary Leon. Dale died at the age of two weeks. Leo and Gary were both killed in a car accident near Dillon on Memorial Day 1970.

On Valentine’s Day 1973, Ellen married Deforest Thompson. They resided in Helena. Deforest died in November 1974. Leo and Deforest played together for dances in the Centennial Valley in their younger days.

Ellen married Richard A. Fleming in May 1982.  Richard died in September 2006. 

Ellen’s survivors include: sons James R. Carpita (Anne, who died in October 2010) of Helena, David D. Carpita (Nitokrees) of St. Remy, France, and John W. Carpita (Linda) of Issaquah, WA; brother Carl (Shirley) Knox of Lima; sisters Marie Gibbons of Portland, Alice (James) Brown and Anna Jeanne (Dave) Moss, all of Lima. Another sister, Gertrude (Dick) Gosman preceded her in death.

Eight grandchildren survive. Two grandsons preceded her in death, Jeffrey Carpita and James Anthony Carpita. She is survived by 12 great-grandsons and six great- granddaughters.

A Memorial Service is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, October 5, 2013, at Grace United Methodist Church, 131 E. Bannack St. in Dillon. A reception will follow the service at the church. Burial will be held at Mountain View Cemetery, Dillon, next to Leo Flint, after the reception. To offer a condolence to the family or to share a memory of Ellen, please visit www.retzfuneralhome.com.