Bernice K. Wiley Mowat

June 10, 1929 ~ October 31, 2021 (age 92) 92 Years Old


Bernice K. Wiley Mowat

June 10, 1929 — Oct. 31, 2021


Bernice “Bernie” Mowat was born on June 10, 1929, as the first child of Frank W. Wiley and Bernice K. Wiley (Barker) in Miles City. Her father Frank was an early aviator, so they moved around a lot as Bernie grew up.

Most of the towns where Bernie grew up were in Montana and she lived at various times in Miles City, Fort Peck, Missoula (where she graduated college in Home Economics), Helena (where she graduated high school), Great Falls and Billings. In addition, she loved spending time at Seeley Lake, both with Camp Fire Girls, and with her family, so it is not surprising that she was such a proud Montanan. After graduating from the University of Montana, Bernie obtained her Masters in Dietetics at the U of Minnesota. Additionally, no bio of Bernie would be complete without mentioning that her flying lessons took her all the way to soloing in a plane.

Bernie was teaching in Great Falls when she met George on a T-bar at Kings Hill Ski area. Not too long after, they married on Sept. 4, 1965, in Great Falls. She made a full-time job of raising her two sons, Jim and Tom, never missing a school event, and when her sons left the nest, she became (very) active with various organizations, including Audubon, Genealogy, the Mayflower Congregational Church and Daughters of the American Revolution. In their more recent years, Bernie and George enjoyed traveling throughout the world in search of bird watching and/or genealogy research opportunities.

Bernie will be fondly remembered for her kindness and optimism. Her favorite things were spending time with family, spumoni ice-cream, reading Julia Child’s “My Life in France,” reminiscing about a trip to the Netherlands and generally helping people. 

Bernie died from an aneurysm in her aorta. She is survived by husband George; sons Jim (Julie) and Tom (Andrea); four grandchildren, Brian, Doug, Ben and Emily; plus extended family, including nephews Terry and Kirk Miller, Bill Mowat and niece Beth Lewin (Mowat). She was preceded in death by her parents and sister Susan.

Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 27, at Mayflower Congregational Church, 2940 Poly Drive in Billings, with a light reception following. To view the service online, visit

In lieu of flowers, suggest donating to one of Bernie’s favorite organizations; PBS, Audubon, Mayflower Church, DAR or a charity of your choice.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Bernice K. Wiley Mowat, please visit our floral store.


Memorial Service
November 27, 2021

2:00 PM
Mayflower Congregational Church


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