Marlene Donelson

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Marlene Donelson passed away peacefully in Cheyenne, Wyoming, on July 12, 2018, surrounded by family members.

Marlene Ruth Lucara Donelson was born June 17, 1933 to Lempi and Victor Lucara in Red Lodge, Montana. During her early years in Red Lodge she and her brothers, Pat and Dick, spent time feeding the young bears that were a tourist attraction at the Harley gasoline station managed by her Mom and Dad.

In her teenage years Marlene was an usher at the Park Theatre and also worked for Pat Linderman in the western clothing store she and her husband, Bill Linderman, owned.

Marlene and Eddie Donelson were married on Dec. 30, 1951. They made their home in Red Lodge and traveled some when Eddie was in the Army.

Returning to Red Lodge full time they became part of the Donelson & Co. lumber business in 1954.

Their two daughters were born in Red Lodge; Vicki, in 1959 and Debbie in 1960.

The family moved to Luther in 1969 and became full time ranchers by choice.

Marlene and Eddie were very involved in local rodeo activities especially the Beartooth Riding & Roping Club that was based at the Red Lodge Rodeo Arena.

Eddie was a roper and Marlene was a timer.

Eventually the happy ranch life was given up after he girls were grown and Eddie went to work in the construction business.

When Eddie passed away in 1989 Marlene moved to Red Lodge permanently to be closer to her daughters and her grandchildren. This also gave her the opportunity to use her substantial skills as a seamstress.

Marlene's greatest joy was sharing her love of the outdoors with her grandchildren. This included her love of horses, dogs, hummingbirds, gardening and dancing! Marlene's houses were always turned into homes.

Marlene leaves behind her daughter Vicki Griffith and Marty and their children Marti Jo (Chris) and their daughter Emma, and son Miles of Cheyenne, Wyoming. Daughter Debbie Holdbrook and John of Roberts, Montana and their children, son Luke (Mariah) of Roberts and their children Rylee, Shawn, Laynee and Colt; son Seth (Kailee) of Douglas, Wyoming and their son Roy; and son Zane of Billings. Her brothers Patrick Lucara of Billings and Dick Lucara (Teri) of Alaska. Numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

Final resting place will be in Rockvale Cemetery with her companion dog, Tara, on Thursday, July 19, 2018 at 11 a.m. Afterward, a Memorial Gathering will be held at Glory Mahan's home, 1222 South White Avenue in Red Lodge.

Memorials may be sent to the Carbon County Historical Society & Museum, 224 Broadway Ave N, Red Lodge, MT 59068, (406) 446-3667.

"The value of life lies not in the length of days but in the use we make of them"


Upcoming Events

  • Thursday, July 18, 2019 - 6:30pm
    The Montana Metal Rockfest will feature Zen, Kicking Karma, and Mr. Big with Trixter, July 18-20 at Boyd’s Garage on 7th Street, Red Lodge. The gigs will kick off at 6:30 p.m. each night.  There is no cover charge. Vendors will be on site. For tickets and information call (406) 446-1519. 
  • Thursday, July 18, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, July 18, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, July 19, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, July 22, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 23, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.