Colleen Y. Trinder 1937 – 2017

After a long struggle with dementia, Colleen Y. Trinder, age 79, passed away peacefully during the early morning hours of March 28, 2017, surrounded by her children. To the end, she retained her sense of humor, wit and incredible love for her children.

Colleen was born December 31, 1937, to Claude Trinder and Hazel Akers, in Poplar. She grew up in Helena and spent summers on the family farm in Poplar. Colleen graduated from high school in Helena and attended McConnel Airline School in Minneapolis and became a flight attendant for Capitol Airlines, based in Washington D.C. Her travels as a flight attendant took her to many locations across the country. She later returned to Helena and worked for the Independent Record in advertising. It was there she met and married Jerry Ryan and together for 29 years they raised three children, Lori, Kelly and Jerry (Butch).

She attended Western Montana College and graduated with a B.S. in Art Education. She pursued her artistic passion as an artist and shared her love of color and design by teaching others to discover their hidden creative talents. She taught school in Sandpoint, Idaho; Poplar; Dillon; and Helena.

Many will always remember her talents, special contributions, and her willingness to share and give to others in the community. She was one of those extraordinary talented people whose talents never stopped giving. She never missed a birthday and sent many cards and care packages that always included her special oatmeal cookies. We will always cherish her hand-penned notes and her beautiful handwriting.

Colleen is survived by: her three children, daughter Lori Ryan (Tim Strozzi), and sons Kelly Ryan (Alanne) and Butch Ryan (Shauna); grandchildren Chris, Ryan and John McGowan, Kadee, Maria and Rachel Ryan, and Cooper, Walker and Carly Ryan; great-grandchildren Keslie, Clancy McGowan, Elli Ryan, Aaden Peterson, Amiya Ryan and Kelly Ryan; sister Marlene Trinder; and nieces Claudene and Michaelene Britt.

Colleen has been reunited and welcomed home to her loving parents, Claude and Hazel, along with many other loved ones who passed before her.
Mom reminded us to always make the effort to care for each other and remember that at one time we partly belonged to her and that piece would always hold us together. She is now our angel and as we move forward together in life we cherish her words and know she is with us always. We love you always, Mom.

We would like to thank Our House for the exceptional care and love mom received during her long journey with dementia.

A family graveside service will take place at 1 p.m. on Friday, July 21, at Sunset Memorial Gardens, followed by a Celebration of Life gathering at Anderson, Stevenson & Wilke Funeral Home, 3750 North Montana Avenue, Helena, MT.