Jean Dodge Moline
Jean Dodge Moline died on February 8, 2021 of natural causes at the age of 90.
Jean Alice Dodge was born on September 7, 1930 in Miles City, Montana. She was the oldest child of Carl August Dodge and Cecil Bertha (Martin) Dodge. Jean’s father homesteaded 44 miles south of Miles City, Montana, building a log home for his young bride. Jean grew up on the family ranch, herding sheep, riding horses and milking goats with her younger brother (by 17 months) Jim. Little sister Wilma was born ten years later.
As children on the ranch, Jean and Jim had to invent their own fun. They tried to use tree pitch for “chewing gum.” They chased a skunk leaving their mother with the difficult task of removing the scent. The ranch is also where Jean first developed her love of reading.
Jean attended a one-room log cabin schoolhouse nearby through 8th grade. Jean graduated from Custer County High School in Miles City in 1948, and attended Custer County Junior College for a year. Jean graduated from the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1952. After college, Jean taught high school English in Rhame, North Dakota. She met her husband Willis Cyrus Moline in Rhame, when she sold him a basketball game ticket. Her friends, wanting to encourage a romance, abandoned Jean leaving Willis to give her a ride home after the game.
Willis and Jean married on December 28, 1954 in Rhame. Kristin Anne Moline was born in 1955 in Rhame. Dorothea (Thea) Cecile Moline was born in 1956 in Billings, Montana. Kurt Willis Moline was born in 1960 in Wabasha, Minnesota while Willis and Jean were living in Pepin, Wisconsin. Jean taught English at Pepin High School. Jean and Willis moved to Hastings, Minnesota in 1961 when Willis began his career at Bahls Motor. Jean was a homemaker in Hastings until 1973 when she started working at the Hastings Public Library. Jean was a reference librarian at Pleasant Hill Library in Hastings when she retired in 2006 after 33 years.
Jean enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren and her Bichon Frise puppies Allegra, Luke and Cara. She also enjoyed reading mysteries, knitting, crocheting, needlepoint, photography, gardening, cross-country skiing, biking, hiking, art museums, water-aerobics, travel, PBS and Minnesota Public Radio.
Jean was preceded in death by her husband Willis Moline, parents Carl and Cecil Dodge, sister Wilma Dodge, brother Jim Dodge, brothers-in-law Lyman Manor and Ivar Moline, sisters-in-law Rita Moline and Cynda Douglas (Dodge), and very recently, lifelong grade-school friend Ella Mary (Frederick) Johnsen.
Jean is survived by her three children Kristin, Thea (Michael Cuddy), Kurt (Mary); six grandchildren Isaac Moline; Elizabeth, Catherine, and Anne Cuddy; Eva and Cecilia Moline; sister-in-law Lila Manor; and in Miles City niece Kelly Jo Tarr and nephew Alan Dodge.
Special thanks to long-time friend and fellow librarian Vivian Perry for visiting Jean at The Wellington Senior Living facility and Episcopal Church Home both in St. Paul, Minnesota, these past four years.
A private ceremony will be held at a later date on the Montana ranch where Jean grew up. Per Jean’s request, her ashes will be spread on a favorite hill overlooking the homestead.
If you are looking for a mystery book to read, Jean loved the author P. D. James.