Berne I. Mitchell died unexpectedly from pneumonia in Helena, on July 17, 2012, at the age of 99.
He was born in Bozeman on June 2, 1913, to L.M. and Naomi Mitchell. He graduated from Billings Senior High in 1933, and served in the army in France and Belgium during WWII from 1944 to 1946. Berne was a veteran of The Battle of the Bulge. He married Muriel A. Benesh in February of 1948, and they thoroughly enjoyed the next 64 years together. He worked at The Snook Art Company, Builder’s Service and Boise Cascade in Billings, and he owned and operated Mitchell’s West End Glass for 28 years until he retired at the age of 79.
Berne was a charter member of the Central Christian Church, belonged to the Billings Elks Lodge #394, the Loyal Order of Moose #558 since 1938, and the Ashlar Lodge #29 AF & AM. He enjoyed spending time with family, playing cards, traveling, camping, and spent the last 22 winters in Mesa, Ariz.
Preceding him in death were his parents and his siblings, Martha Snow, Irene Lindberg, Orille Mitchell and Rubey Mitchell. He is survived by his wife, Muriel; his sons, Jim (Becky) of Corvallis, Ore., and Larry (Becky) of Helena; daughters Connie Moratelli of Helena and Kathy (Pat) Ives of Billings; his six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren; and numerous nephews and nieces. He and his family were very much looking forward to celebrating his 100th birthday next year.
Visitation will be from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, July 22, at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary in Billings. Services will be at 1 p.m. Monday, July 23, at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary. Military honors will follow at Sunset Memorial Gardens.
Memorials can be made to Central Christian Church or the Montana Rescue Mission.