In memory of

Charlotte R. Thomas, age 84, of Helena

March 22, 1930 – August 31, 2014


Charlotte Thomas, age 84 of Helena, passed away on August 31st at Apple Rehabilitation Center in Helena after complications from a stroke.


Charlotte was born in Billings on March 22, 1930 to Anton and Barbara Romee, the youngest of three daughters.  She attended schools in Billings, graduating from Billings Senior High School in 1948 and went on to earn an Associate Degree in Education at Eastern Montana College in 1951.   Charlotte moved to Sheridan, Montana after college to take her first teaching position.


Charlotte met, and then married, her husband of over 50 years, Alve J. Thomas, who was the Superintendent of Schools in Sheridan.  Charlotte and Alve welcomed three children during the next several years in Sheridan – Terry, Jack and Julie.  Charlotte served as a substitute teacher over the next dozen years.  In 1964 the family moved to Red Lodge for a year where Alve was Superintendent of Schools, then to Helena in 1965. Charlotte earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Carroll College shortly after moving to Helena and taught 4th grade at Central School for over 20 years, retiring from a distinguished teaching career in 1989.


Not one for idle time during retirement, Charlotte volunteered her time to many statewide and local organizations.  She served as State Communications Director for AARP for a number of years, was President of the Helena Retired Teachers Association and board member of the Montana Retired Teachers Association, volunteered weekly for over 20 years at the Montana Historical Society, and volunteered at St. Peters hospital.  Charlotte was also a talented seamstress and delighted in making her seasonal decorations including pumpkins of all sizes, Christmas trees, Christmas stockings, St. Patrick’s decorations and more that she would market at craft sales throughout the year.  Many households in Helena have brighter holidays due to her colorful decorations.


Charlotte was preceded in death by her husband Alve, her parents, and sisters Mable and Barbara. She is survived by son Terry (Teri) Thomas, Jack (Vicki) Thomas and daughter Julie Thomas Hintz all of Helena; grandchildren Shane Thomas, Amy Arlint , Nick Thomas, Peter Hintz, Robert Hintz, and Elizabeth Hintz; and great-grandchildren Chayse Thomas, Brendan Thomas and Ryleigh Thomas.


Family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m., Thursday, September 4th, at Retz Funeral Home, 315 E. 6th ave., Helena. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, September 5th, at St. Mary Catholic Community Church, 1700 Missoula Ave. Interment will immediately follow the Mass at Resurrection Cemetery with a reception following at Anderson Stevenson Wilke Funeral Home, 3750 N. Montana Ave., Helena, Montana 59602. Memorials may be made in Charlotte’s name to the Lewis & Clark Retired Educators Scholarship Fund, c/o Tom Altmaier, 1024 Waukesha Ave., Helena MT  59601 or to the Montana Historical Society, 225 North Roberts, P.O. Box 201201, Helena, Montana 59620-1201. Please visit below to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of Charlotte.



Read the thoughts and memories, then feel free to add your own.

  1. Lynn and Tom Campbell says

    Dear Julie, our thoughts and prayers are with you and the family during this hard time. So sad to hear, your Mom was AWESOME! I pray that you find comfort through friends and family. Please let us know if we can do anything for you. Love, Lynn and Tom

  2. Allen Stenhjem Family says

    Terry and Family,
    Our thoughts and Prayers are with you all ,God Bless…….
    Allen and Glenda

  3. Bill &Helen Dunbar & family says

    Terry, Jack and Julie & families- Our thoughts and prayers are with you. She was our cheerful upbeat neighbor for many many years. One of Helen’s favorite recollections is coming to the door and hearing Jackie barking inside and Charlotte telling her, “be quiet. it’s Helen” and Jackie stopped barking. She will be missed by you and all who knew and loved her. May she rest in Peace. Love- Bill & Helen and family

  4. Bob and Teresa Lyman Cole says

    Julie, Jack, Terry and families,
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Your mom was so special. I still have the teddy bear she made when Ryan was born. Ryan outgrew it and I couldn’t part with it. It has been on our bed for years and I think of her every morning when I make the bed. Treasure all the precious memories you have of times together. Cherish all the love you shared. She and the teddy bear were Made with Tender Loving Care.
    Love, Teresa and Bob

  5. Steve and Darla Flansaas says

    Our thoughts and prayers are will all of you. Charlotte was a wonderful person. She was quite the crafter. I will never forget when she taught a bunch of us girls how to make pine cone Christmas trees. They were beautiful. We still have ours, and it gets put up every Christmas so I will always remember Charlotte every year at that time. Keep those great memories close to your hearts. Please let us know if we can do anything to help out during this difficult time.

  6. Martha Kohl says

    I started working at the Montana Historical Society nineteen years ago and quickly looked forward to seeing Charlotte each week. Kind words and bright smile never failed to make my day.

  7. We will miss Charlotte at the Montana Historical Society and thank her for her dedicated service. She brightened the office each and every time that she walked in. Charlotte took great pride in her work, helped with proofreading, file organization, mailed out book reviews to authors and publishers, magazine inventory, office décor, special projects, and writing subscription gift cards. Over the course of over 20 years (23, I think), she mailed out well over 10,000 cards all hand-done with her beautiful penmanship. We will miss her cheer, wit, and friendship but cherish all the beautiful memories, crafts, and art that she leaves with us. Heaven is a much brighter place and she’s free from pain and frustration now. Peace be with friends and family as she smiles down on us.
    See you later, my friend. We’ll celebrate when we meet again!
    Tammy Ryan
    Montana The Magazine of Western History

  8. Glenda (Ridgway) Dupuis says

    Dear Terry, Jack and Julie and family, my thoughts and prayers are with you all. Your mom and dad have always been a role model to me and I am proud to have known them. Its was just like time had not passed when I talked to your mom earlier this year…and just like we were still 13..she kindly asked what I was up to before she yelled out…”Julie, its Glenda”. She always made me feel like a family member. I will never forgot her trusting Julie and all of us to take her cool beattle bug car out on Friday nights to drive the drag. As all 8 of us piled in, we only hoped she would let us have it again the following weekend too. I love your mom and I love your family. God bless you all.

  9. Art & Clara Gilreath says

    Terry, Jack & Julie and families, we are sorry to hear of your mother’s passing.
    She was a great lady and a good friend.
    Our prayers and thoughts are with you during this difficult timer.
    May God bless you.

  10. Shauna Longmire says

    Terry and family,

    Mrs. Thomas was my 4th grade teacher at Central and a teacher that I remember because of her kindness and willingness to help me whenever I had problems. She was then, and always has been, one of my favorite teachers and one that I still remember all these years later. I am sorry for your loss, she was an awesome and loved teacher.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

    Shauna Longmire

  11. Katie White says

    Charlotte volunteered for us at the Montana Historical Society for 23-years and this was still a recent activity for her. Charlotte came in every single Thursday afternoon like clock work! My office is down the hall from where she volunteered, in the Publications Department, and I always looked forward to seeing her bright smile. I always liked to know what creative project she was working on, she was an artist! She will be missed dearly!
    Katie White
    MHS Volunteer Coordinator

  12. Jo and Paul Bryson says

    Julie, Jack and Terry,
    We are so sorry to hear about your Mom. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May God bless you and bring you comfort. I know Alve made sure she was greeted by a choir of angels. 🙂 Your folks were the best and were such good friends with my parents. Love you guys!!! {{{ big hugs to you all }}}

  13. Mrs Thomas was the BEST and most beloved teacher. Our children all flourished under her tender loving teaching. Thanks to all your family for sharing with us at Central School. She will not be forgotten.

  14. I had the privilege of working with Charlotte after her strokes- She was GREAT! Always willing to work with therapy, trying her best and smiling throughout. She was a joy to work with. So sorry for your loss.
    Karla Hart

  15. Kevin Hathcock says

    Mrs. Thomas was one of those rare teachers who knew how to made teaching something fun as well as educational. Her warm smile was always welcoming. She will be missed!

  16. Charlotte Rehmer says

    Jack, Terry & Julie……So very sorry for your loss. Your Mom & Dad and Harold & I moved to Helena at about the same time. We house hunted together, spent many special hours together and don’t forget the “green” beer your mom fixed for your Dad on St. Patty’s Day. They were very special people and we reconnected with them when we returned to Mont. for visits. Your mom was a very talented artist and I am the recipient of several of her projects. My prayers go to you in this difficult time. Needless to say you will miss her terribly.

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