Evelyn Ann (Evie) Monsrud Crants
Evelyn Ann (Evie) Crants died peacefully, in the presence of her husband and daughter, Thursday morning May 14, 2020 at St. Peters Hospital in Helena, MT due to complications of long-term Type I diabetes and heart disease.
Evie was born July 13, 1937 in Clearbrook, MN to Carl and Pearl (Toft) Monsrud. She lived her childhood and early teen years on the family farm/dairy at the edge of Gonvick, MN, a small town named for her grandparents operated a farm and a sawmill. Following her into the family were five brothers, so she was always a “Daddy’s Girl”.
In her early teens Evie’s parents separated. Carl deeded the farm to Pearl and left for Montana. At age fifteen, being Daddy’s girl, Evie secretly bought a train ticket to join her dad in Wolf Point, where she waitressed in a café. When her father’s employment took him away, he had to leave her on her own in their apartment. Bill and Viola Hentges, recognizing the difficulties facing a young lady who wanted finish high school, welcomed her into their home. She became a life-long member of a wonderful family as a “sister” to their own eleven children.
On September 14, 1957 Evie married Bob Crants. They had dated for two years and waited to age 20 to avoid the “teen-age marriage” stigma. She and Bob, employed by (and retired from), the engineering division of the Montana Highway Department, were transferred to several areas before arriving in Helena in 1971. Evie enjoyed her 25 years as a successful Avon representative from 1975 to 2000.
While a high school senior in 1956, she had contracted three viral infections simultaneously. This destroyed the function of her pancreas and began her sixty-five-year battle with Type I diabetes. During her life a triple bypass heart operation, surgical removal of simultaneous and merging uterine and ovarian cancer tumors, two separate spiral fractures of her left femur within ten weeks, a left knee replacement, and finally, left side heart failure were all detrimental events in the life of a Type 1 diabetic.
Evie gave birth to three boys and a girl. The first son died at full term during a 48-hr delivery struggle. The second son, Patrick, died of cancer Oct 15, 2014. She will live forever in the hearts of Diana in Helena, and Mark & Teresa in Lakewood, CO.
She was preceded in death by brother Bud of Redwood Falls, MN; and is survived by four brothers: Ken of Atlanta; Jerry of Marshall, MN; Merlin of Ft. White, FLGA; and Parnell of Jacksonville, AR., and several nieces and nephews. She also leaves many. many members of her large Hentges family, and her loving husband, Bob.
Due to social distancing mandates related to COVID19 social distancing will be implemented at the services. A memorial service celebrating Evie’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 21st at Anderson Stevenson Wilke Funeral Home, 3750 N. Montana Ave. Graveside services will follow the service at Forestvale Cemetery.