Margaret Ann Birkenbuel 1938-2020

Wednesday, July 8, 2020
Margaret Ann Birkenbuel 1938-2020

Margaret Ann Birkenbuel went to heaven peacefully on July 4, 2020. Peggy was born on July 27, 1938 in Portland, Oregon, to Edward and Hazel Driscoll. She grew up with nine brothers and sisters and attended St. Mary’s Academy.

Peggy was a badass! She was a strong, confident, independent, adventurous woman that had a zest for life. In her early career she had many unique opportunities working in the corporate world in Seattle; such as watching and flying on the first 737 Boeing airplane and appearing in a movie with Elvis at the World’s Biggest Fair. She taught skiing at Stevens Pass and promoted and distributed the first issue of Powder Magazine. Her passion was skiing and those early accomplishments gave her an adventurous spirit and the opportunity to do whatever she wanted later in life.

In the early 1970s she moved to the Big Hole Valley in Montana to work at Sundance Lodge. She wanted to be in the mountains and ski. In the Big Hole she met many people while working on ranches and teaching skiing at Deep Creek Ski Area and Maverick Mountain. That’s where she met Butch Birkenbuel they were married and had three little rowdy boys: Brady, Cody and Cory. Raising her boys was the biggest joy and accomplishment in her life. She loved her boys and taught them to work hard and to persevere in everything they did. Her boys were her life and she loved to brag about them!

She graduated from Western Montana College in the mid-1990s with a teaching degree, and after the boys grew up, Peggy moved to Alaska to chase a dream of teaching school and creating art. Peggy loved Alaska and experienced many adventures with new friends. She fell in love with hockey and was known as Grandma Nanook while attending every game at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. After spending 20 years in Alaska it was time to come home to Dillon, Montana, to be with her boys.

Peggy left a mark on everyone she met and could connect with someone right away, always making new friends and telling stories. She had an infectious smile and she could light up a room when she entered it. When people would ask her how she was doing she would reply, “Got three hours and I’ll tell you.”

There is a visitation scheduled for Tuesday, July 7, from 6-7:30 p.m. at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, with a vigil service and rosary starting at 7:30 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Wednesday, July 8, 2020 at 12:10 p.m. at the church. A guestbook is available online at