|Birth: ||Dec. 1, 1954|
North Dakota, USA
|Death: ||Apr. 13, 2012|
Virginia "Ginny" Ruth Archdale, 57, of Wibaux passed away on Friday, April 13, 2012.
A devoted wife, sister and aunt, she was a bright light in the lives of many. She also was a woman of words. As a journalist, she respected brevity. If her essence was captured in two words, they would be "big hearted."
Born in Dickinson, N.D., on Dec. 1, 1954, Ginny Getz and her family moved to Montana in 1956. Seven months after her youngest sister, Loretta, was born in 1958, their father, Lloyd, passed away of a sudden heart attack.
Growing up in a family of nine children, Mrs. Archdale learned a lot about sharing, caring and teamwork. In 1962, the family purchased a farm south of Whitehall, which became known simply as "the place." Her mother, Ruth, taught her to respect the land, appreciate hard work and responsibility and to enjoy the sustaining power of laughter through good times and bad.
Before the children could go swimming, they had to weed two rows of the garden. In the summer they fished for trout on the banks of Fish Creek and the Jefferson River. In the winter they skated on the frozen creek.
Mrs. Archdale was 15 when her mother died. Her older brothers, Garry and Kevin, helped raise the younger ones on "the place." Although Mrs. Archdale lost her parents when she was young, she inherited from her mother qualities that anyone who knew Mrs. Archdale would recognize: honesty, unconditional love, loyalty and pride. Her mother also gave Mrs. Archdale a deep faith in God, a faith that strengthened and comforted her during her illness.
Mrs. Archdale was a member of the St. Peter's Roman Catholic Church, baptized at St. Mary's in Marmarth, N.D, and confirmed at St. Theresa of Avila in Whitehall.
Mrs. Archdale's "smarts" were evident at an early age. She wasn't a first-grader for long before she was moved to second grade. Her sister, Mary, gave her a life-long gift when she taught Mrs. Archdale to read as a small child.
Reading began writing. From her work on the high school newspaper to a byline in the Virginia City, Montana, newspaper, Mrs. Archdale proved to be a capable, incisive writer. She graduated as salutatorian of the class of 1972 at Whitehall High School.
She received her bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Montana at Missoula in 1976. With that degree she went to work at the Bismarck, N.D., Bismarck Tribune and the Glendive Ranger-Review, where she was promoted from reporter to editor. A proponent of rural living, Mrs. Archdale shared those insights as a columnist for "Montana Magazine."
She once said of reporting, "I really liked being on the spot as news developed. It engaged my brain, and the reporter's notebook allowed me to ask all the questions I wanted." The Montana Press Association agreed and awarded her many honors.
The year 1979 was momentous for her. She met her future husband, Mike Archdale, and they began a 30-year adventure together. On Sept. 2, 1982, they were married at Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Miles City by Rev. Chuck Mitchell, an Episcopalian minister. Rev. Schlosser, a Roman Catholic priest, blessed the ceremony, which reflected Mr. and Mrs. Archdale's respect for each other's perspective and philosophies. It also characterized their relationship in the years to come.
Mrs. Archdale shared with her husband trout fishing in western Montana while eating watermelon from a cold mountain stream. He shared with his wife a hot, dry afternoon at the Fourth of July rodeo in Terry. Mrs. Archdale introduced her husband to a new culinary sensation at his first lutefisk dinner in 1983. Mr. Archdale shared lamb, mushrooms and curry venison. Their marriage was seasoned with spirited discussions about politics and varying viewpoints based on a strong foundation of love.
In 1983, they moved to Wibaux, where Mr. Archdale went to work for the Wibaux public school system, and Mrs. Archdale began her job at the Ranger Review. In 1990, she became the town clerk for Wibaux. She was elated at the prospect of eight-hour workdays, unlike the 14-hour days she put in on the Review. But an "eight-hour day" was not in her vocabulary.
Mrs. Archdale's passion to make Wibaux and eastern Montana better places to live capitalized on her many talents for a host of projects. She wrote a historical pageant for Wibaux County during the state centennial in 1989 and helped create the town's 2011 historical calendar. Even while suffering from the effects of her cancer treatment, she worked hard to complete the budget last summer.
An avid birdwatcher, trout fisher and gardener, Mrs. Archdale's hobbies reflected her love of nature and attachment to the earth. She was at peace when riding the lawnmower. In December 2011, after years of searching, she finally spotted a snowy owl west of Wibaux.
The most precious things in her life were family and friends. All of her family were dear to her, but she shared a very special bond with her sister, Loretta, with whom she spent many holidays. She deeply appreciated the kindnesses people showed her during this past year. Muriel Sokoloski's and Debie McBride's efforts enabled Mrs. Archdale to visit her brothers and sisters in western Montana, and to walk and fish on "the place" to restore her soul in order to face the health challenges that lay ahead.
Mrs. Archdale was the kind of aunt every child wants. Devoted, loving and very proud of all of her 21 nieces and nephews, she followed their lives and careers with great interest. During the summer of 2011 Mrs. Archdale was able to do a number of wishes on her bucket list, which included, trout fishing, the Getz family reunion, attending a Montana Griz football game and having her first taste of Griz Whiz.
She is survived by her husband, Mike; five brothers; three sisters; and their spouses and children. Her brothers are Kevin and Judy Getz of Butte, Garry and Jeanne Getz of Whitehall, Bob Getz of Big Timber, Eddie and Sandy Getz of Slinger, Wis., and Teddy Getz of Auburn, Wash.; sisters, Mary and Frank Johnston of Butte, Juanita and Brian Hockett of Havre and Loretta and Scott Andrews of Helena; a sister-in-law, Gloria Archdale of Miles City; a brother-in-law, Lionel (Sandy) Archdale of Redmond, Wash.; and numerous cousins.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Lloyd and Ruth Getz; her father-in-law and mother-in-law, Jimmy Archdale and Hattie Erdine Ayers Archdale; and her sister-in-law, Patricia Eleinor Erdine Archdale.
A vigil service was on Monday, April 16, 2012, at 7 p.m. at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Wibaux.
Mass of Christian Burial was on Tuesday, April 17, 2012, at 10 a.m. at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Wibaux.
Interment was at 2:30 p.m. at the Custer County Cemetery in Miles City.
A reception followed at Stevenson and Sons Funeral Home.
Memorials may be made to Gynecologic Cancer Foundation, 230 W. Monroe, Chicago, IL 60606 or to Wibaux County Nursing Home boiler fund and the Wibaux Endowment Fund.
Custer County Cemetery
Created by: Karen Griswold Stroh
Record added: Apr 17, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 88671406