Jean Audray Sobolik, daughter of Vernon and Genevieve (Bahl) Smith, was born October 13, 1939 in Arthur, North Dakota. She grew up on a small, self-sufficient farm near Arthur. Jean graduated high school and continued her education at Mayville State College. After one year, her marriage took her overseas to Germany followed by moves to Minnesota, North Dakota and Montana.
She was a devoted mother who was very involved in her children’s activities, in particular Cub Scouts, Brownies and Campfire Girls. When her children were older, she began working as a receptionist and later as an office manager for Drs. Charles and Catherine Steele in Great Falls. Upon their retirement, she began working for St. Joseph’s parish serving in numerous capacities until her own retirement at the age of 70.
Jean volunteered at assisted living facilities, served as a eucharistic minister to the homebound, knitted countless baby afghans and stocking caps for charity, and enjoyed visiting the horses and donkeys at Eagle Mount Therapeutic Restoration as they reminded her of the time on the farm.
In her later years, she moved to Missoula to be nearer to family. She enjoyed getting to know her fellow residents and participating in the activities available at the Burlington Square Apartments. She spent a great deal of time and energy compiling her childhood memories and researching her family history for her children and grandchildren who will be eternally grateful for this amazing gift. Above all else, Jean was a loving, thoughtful and kind woman who will be truly missed.
Left to cherish Jean’s memory are her children, Kim (Patrick) Straughan; Kenneth Sobolik; Kurt Sobolik; grandchildren, Ryan Straughan; Aaron (Allison) Straughan; brother, Charles (Rosanne) Smith; nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
She preceded in death by her parents Vernon and Genevieve Smith; sisters, Delores “Mitzie” Ottesen; Marjory “Susie” Smith.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m., Friday, March 18, 2022 at the Blessed Trinity Catholic Church (1475 Eaton St, Missoula, MT 59801). Online condolences may be left at sunsetfuneralhomecemetery.com.