In memory of

Evelyn B. Senecal, age 97, of Helena

March 13, 1922 – June 10, 2019

Evelyn Senecal passed away in her Helena home on June 10, 2019, at the age of 97.  Evey was born In Devils Lake, North Dakota, on March 12th or 13th, 1922 (depending on whether you consult her family’s traditional day of celebration or Social Security’s date of record). Her parents Selmer and Josephine Erickstad farmed near Starkweather, ND, and Evey grew up loving horses and everything outdoors.

After graduating from Starkweather High School in 1939, Evey worked in the Ramsey County Courthouse, with interim wartime work experiences in California and Denver.  In 1945, she married Edward Senecal. The couple lived in Devils Lake, where they raised two daughters, Patricia and Cheryl. Evey worked in the courthouse and became County Treasurer in 1964, ultimately being elected to five 4-year terms. Evey was well known for her sewing skills, but also played bridge and golfed well into her eighties. Evey and Eddie were classy dancers, and they loved to travel as well.

When Alzheimer’s entered Eddie’s life, Evey cared for him at home for over three years.  After Eddie’s death in 1999, Evey continued to live independently in the home they had built in 1949.  In 2013, Evey moved to Helena with her daughter, Pat, to be closer to family. In Helena, Evey especially enjoyed playing pinochle at the Senior Center twice a week.

Evelyn Senecal is preceded in death by her husband Edward, her parents Selmer and Josephine Erickstad, brother Myron Erickstad, and sister Ann Snow.  She is survived by her daughters Patricia Mathieson of Helena and Cheryl Roller (Bill) of Bozeman, grandchildren Ryan Wilcox (Jamie) of Helena; Chad Wilcox (Rhonda) of Boulder, Colorado; Ashley Casto (Dave) of Bozeman; great-grandchildren Cameron, Joshua, and Nathaniel Wilcox; and Josephine, William, and Matilda Casto of Bozeman; as well as her brother Roger Erickstad (Char) of Longview, Texas, and numerous nieces and nephews.

A rosary will be held 6:00 p.m., Monday, June 24th at Retz Funeral Home, 315 E. 6th Ave. Helena, Montana. A Funeral Mass will be held Tuesday, June 25th at 12:00 p.m. the Cathedral of St. Helena, 530 N. Ewing, Helena, Montana. Reception will immediately follow in the Brondel Center of the church. A memorial Mass will be held at 2:00 p.m., Friday, June 28th at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 517 4th St. NE, Devils Lake, North Dakota. Rite of Committal will immediately follow at St Joseph’s Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Divine Mercy Academy, 601 W. Cameron, Belgrade, MT 59714.


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

  1. Carol Henderson says

    I met Evie and her daughters, Pat and Cheryl, both through pinochle at the Senior Center and at church. Evie was a great but gracious competitor. Oh, how excited she got when she was dealt a great hand! She really looked forward to our quarterly tournaments! I will miss seeing her. I learned a lot about the kind of woman and mother Evie was by visiting with her, and learning about how she cared for her husband while he had Alzheimer’s. Pat and Cheryl had the best example of what love and commitment is and they used it well as they cared for their Mother these past several years.

  2. Warren & Barb Halvorson says

    My wife Barb & my brother Doug & I want to send our heartfelt condolences to Pat & Cherrie on the passing of their mom. Evey & our mom (Elsie Halvorson) were friends most of their lives, growing up around Starkweather, N.Dak., & graduating from high school there in 1939. Their friendship spanned over seven more decades in Devils Lake until my mom passed away in 2013. I had to come home in the fall of 2012 to take care of my mom when Doug had to go to the hospital in Grand Forks for two weeks. Pat & Evey brought food and friendship to us & really helped mom & myself get through those two weeks. We survived, thanks to the kindness of neighbors & friends, & I have always appreciated that so much. I’m picturing the house at the east end of 1st Street in D.L.– always one of the cutest houses in town. It was a favorite stop of ours on the milk route (Doc’s Dairy), & I know it was a great place to grow up with Eddie & Evey as parents. I’m thinking there’s a Stormking reunion going on in Heaven now for the Class of ’39 and the sharing of lots of memories, certainly including golf & bowling & bridge & pinochle. God bless you both and all your family. Warren Halvorson

Add your thoughts and memories.