Colleen Deb Smith, 79, passed away peacefully in the early morning of January 3, 2022, at Touchmark in Helena, Montana. She was the daughter of well-known Helena residents Willis T “Professor” Siebold of “The Three Keyboards” fame and Hazel Mary (Baum) Siebold, a favorite local singer who was a Hollywood recording artist. Willis and Hazel met in Hollywood and would later settle down in Helena where Colleen was born on October 29, 1942, at St. John’s Hospital.
Colleen grew up in Helena and attended Broadwater Elementary, Helena Junior High and St. Helena Cathedral High School. In school she enjoyed cheerleading, baton twirling and music. Like her parents, Colleen played piano and sang and even performed a private recital at the Helena Civic Center. Colleen’s father was a large influence in her life, both in terms of pursing her musical talents and fostering a love of animals and the outdoors, especially fishing. Colleen would often enjoy time in West Yellowstone at the family cabin fishing with her dad and his brother, Merlin Siebold, who along with his wife Pauline owned the M & P Tavern along the Missouri River south of Cascade.
Colleen met her first husband, Hiram Graham, at the state fair in Great Falls and they married on July 29, 1963, at the Cathedral of St. Helena. Hiram worked as an engineer for Boeing, which in their early years took them to Idaho, Utah, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Missouri before settling back down in Helena to grow their family. Their daughter Gina was born in June of 1967, but tragically Hiram passed away later that year. Colleen went on to raise Gina with the help of her mother Hazel before she met James P (Jim) Smith and they married on August 15, 1973. Jim worked several years for Burlington Northern Railroad before taking a position with the Montana Power Company, where he remained for 20 years. Jim and Colleen purchased their dream home on Cannon Street where they would raise their daughter and Colleen could spend time on her hobbies of decorating, cooking, gardening, and following her passion of caring for their pets and rescue animals. Over the years, Colleen held several positions around Helena including work at Eddie’s Bakery, as a dental technician, secretarial work at Carroll College, adoption services at the hospital, and as a nurse’s aide at Broadwater Elementary, where she retired due to health reasons.
In April of 1996, one of Colleen’s greatest loves came along, her grandson Logan. In her later years, Colleen enjoyed nothing more than talking and laughing with Logan and was thrilled to have visited him several times in Oregon, enjoying activities in the Columbia River Gorge and at the Oregon Coast.
Colleen was preceded in death by her parents, husbands Hiram Graham (d 1967) and Jim Smith (d 2003) and is survived by daughter Gina Maria (Graham) Myers, son-in-law Jim Myers, and her grandson Logan Myers of Tualatin, Oregon. A memorial service is planned for Monday, January 17, 2022, at 11am at Anderson Stevenson & Wilke Funeral Home, interment at Resurrection Cemetery and a reception following.
Colleen’s family would like to extend a special thank you to Jim Liedle for the many years of loving care and companionship he provided Colleen, to caregiver Jody Novak and to the caregivers of Touchmark on Saddle Drive.
A memorial service celebrating Colleen’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, January 17th at Anderson Stevenson Wilke Funeral Home, 3750 N. Montana Ave. Rite of Committal will follow the service at Resurrection Cemetery. A reception will follow the burial in the social hall of the funeral home. Memorials in Colleen’s honor can be made to the Lewis & Clark Humane Society, P.O. Box 4455, Helena, MT 59604.