Kristine Sara (Moy) Meili passed away from cancer on November 30, 2021. She was born on January 17, 1949, in Missoula to O. Marshall and Vivian E. Moy. Kris always expressed her faithful love for Jesus, her Savior. He was her best friend. She loved talking to Him and about Him. He always comforted her with His abiding friendship. She remembers well the times He showed up in her life through the powerful Holy Spirit. Kris has now joined Him and is at peace, joining her parents, her nephew Tyler, and her grandparents.
Kris grew up at 1114 Poplar Street, a gorgeous home. She attended Prescott grade school, Hellgate High School, and the University of Montana, where she earned a degree in elementary education. While there, she participated in the Kadettes, an Army ROTC all-female drill team. A tall, sharp looking beauty.
As a child, Kris was surrounded by her older twin brothers, who at times made her life just barely tolerable. Still, she enjoyed family gatherings at the ranch up Marshall Canyon, which her grandparents bought in 1914. There, she grew up around horses and had her own quarter horse. In high school, a riding accident broke her back. She mended well, but it bothered her in later years. Kris also enjoyed swimming in Flathead Lake and Holland Lake. Because of her love of Flathead Lake, Kris rented a cabin in Skidoo Bay for several years. She enjoyed spending time there relaxing, and she invited family and friends to enjoy the place with her every summer. Kris worked one summer during college as a waitress at Eddie’s Café in Apgar. She loved being in Glacier.
After graduation, Kris taught third and fifth grades in Browning, MT, for several years before moving to Ronan. She loved teaching elementary school, and she loved her students even more. Peg Rowe, a close teacher friend said, “Mrs. Meili, as most everyone in the valley called her, was an awesome teacher. She managed her class in a firm but loving way.” Kris knew that her students would remember her reading the The Great Brain! stories to them. Peg Rowe said, “Her greatest legacy through was her very deep and real love and concern for the children and families of her beloved Ronan.” So many were blessed by her acts of kindness. Barnaby Smith, another teacher, invited her to join his family on numerous occasions. She became like an aunt to his kids. He said, “She would always bring her coconut cream and lemon meringue pies to share. We enjoyed chatting about Westerns, history, school, and her favorite book series The Outlander.”
After Kris retired from many years of pouring her heart into teaching, she continued to serve her community by volunteering to work with kindergarten students. She even helped some high school graduates financially so they could further their education. Because of her love for her town, Kristine is leaving a gift for graduating Ronan high school students. In her name, she wanted to set up a scholarship fund to help deserving Ronan graduates advance to higher educational institutions. It was her desire that whoever was helped by this fund would also seek and find the joy she which found in her Best Friend, Jesus.
Kris loved living in Ronan, where she was surrounded by a delightful circle of wonderful friends. She saw some of them when she worked at the Ronan Bread Basket. She spent fun hours with others at the Shepherd’s Table or at St Luke’s exercise facility, and she enjoyed leisurely breakfasts with her retired teacher friends. During Kristine’s battles with cancer, Chris Shrider, Helen Sorenson, Peg, Barnaby, and a host of other dear friends took her to doctor appointments in Missoula and Polson, cared for Sophie her beloved cat, and brought meals, treats, and necessities to Kristine. Through many other such kindnesses, she was truly blessed!
Survivors include her brothers: Randy (Nancy) Moy and Richard (Gigi) Moy, as well as the families of her nieces and nephew.
Any gifts can be made out to the Kristine Meili Scholarship Fund, in care of Valley Bank, PO Box 9, Ronan, MT 59864. A celebration of Kris’s life will be held Saturday, June 18, 2022 at 11:00 am at K. William Harvey Elementary School on the north field of the school. A light lunch will be held afterward in the KWH lunchroom.