Dorothy Ann Harms
June 14, 2023
Born of November 1, 1941, in a small farmhouse nestled among wheat fields in Malta, Montana, Dorothy Ann Harms was the first of four children for Theodore William (Bill) Henry and Gladys Pearl Runkel. She spent her early years on their homestead south of Malta, attending the nearby one-room schoolhouse. Dorothy's life journey led her to marry James (Jim) Richard Blake, and together they raised four children: Brenda Lee, Deborah Diana (Debbie), Anita Marie, and clayton William (Pete). Over the years, Dorothy and her family resided in Alberton, Missoula, and eventually returned to Malta in the Mid-1970s.
In Malta, Dorothy found love again when she married Walter Wilhelm Harms. She embraced her role as a stepmother, welcoming Walter's children, Walter Jr., Willie, Twilla, Fred, Raymond, and Janni Jo, into her heart. Supporting Walter's military career, Dorothy moved with him to Helena before returning to Malta after his retirement.
During the summer months, Dorothy enjoyed embarking on camping adventures with her family in the scenic town of Zortman, Montana. Nestled amidst breathtaking natural beauty, Zortman became a haven for Dorothy. Together, they would park their campers under the vast starry sky, enveloped by nature's soothing sounds. The crackling campfire, laughter echoing through the trees, and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee filled their days with warmth and contentment. Dorothy's eyes sparkled with delight as she explored the surrounding wilderness, relishing nature's wonders. These cherished camping trips in Zortman held a special place in Dorothy's heart, forever etching memories of love, laughter, and a deep appreciation for Montana's landscapes.
Dorothy's compassionate and caring nature shone through in her unwavering loyalty to her family and friends. She had a deep-rooted sense of community and was always there to lend a helping hand. Her warmth, generosity, and infectious laughter brought immeasurable joy to those fortunate to know her.
As we gather to bid our final goodbyes, let us remember Dorothy as a true daughter of Montana-a country girl who fearlessly embraced life, her spirit intertwined with the beauty that surrounded her. Her legacy will forever be woven into the winds sweeping the prairies, the rolling hills she called home, and the hearts of all fortunate enough to cross her path.
In honor of Dorothy, let us continue to embrace life's simple pleasures, find solace in the untamed wilderness, and nurture community bonds. May her spirit guide us as we navigate the vast and breathtaking landscapes she called home, forever keeping her memory alive.
Rest in peace, dear Dorothy. Though you are deeply missed, your spirit will forever roam these Montana plains.
Dorothy is preceded in death by her parent; her beloved husband, Walter; her son, Pete; her daughter, Brenda; her sister, Bonnie Emond; her sister, Bernice Wiley; her stepdaughter, Adayla; and her stepson, Fred. She is survived by her loving daughters, Debbie (Marlin) Cilz of Malta and Anita (Mike) Scheffelmear of Lewistown; her sister, Wilma Plouffe (Malta); her stepchildren, Walter Harms, Jr. (Miles City), Willie (Malta), Ray (Malta), Twilla Johannesen (Malta), and Janni Wiese (Malta); 35 grandchildren; and 23 great-grandchildren. In addition, Dorothy leaves behind a wide circle of dear friends and cherished loved ones who will carry her memory with them.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on June 17, 2023, at the Malta Cemetery. A luncheon will follow at the Little White Church. If there is inclement weather the service will be held at the Little White Church.