Rachel Ann Kysar


(Feb. 28, 2007)

Rachel Ann "Billie" Kysar, died Wednesday, Feb. 28 at St. Vincent Hospital in Billings. She was 90.

She was born May 23, 1916 to James T. and Effie Jane (Parsons) Carpenter, in Gering, Neb., the third child of four. The family moved to Wyoming in the 1920s when her family purchased a homestead in the Deaver area. Later, Rachel's father also contracted the plumbing work for the Irma Hotel, and he often played in card games with Buffalo Bill Cody.

She met her husband, John R. Kysar in Powell, when he rode by on horseback to see the pretty new blonde in town. They were married Aug. 25, 1937, in her parents backyard. To this union were born four children.

John and Rachel started farming in Powell, and later moves took them to Cody, Bercail, Mont., and then to Ryegate, Mont., In Ryegate, Rachel belonged to Eastern Star and the Methodist Church Ladies. She helped with 4-H clubs, was active in her card clubs, and especially enjoyed teaching the Charleston and tap dance to schoolchildren.

Rachel and John later moved to Billings where they owned an apartment house, and then to Lockwood. After her husband's death, Rachel moved into Casa Village. She resided there until 1997, when her three daughters began to care for her.

She was a resident at Highgate Senior Cottage in Billings for only a short time, but she especially enjoyed the music and entertainment. She spent Tuesday evening with the residents and daughter, Rosie, and danced the two-step. Rachel loved to dance and sing and taught herself dance by watching silent movies.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 49 years, John; son Dick; a son-in-law; a grandson; her brother, Jim; and her sister, Marie.

She is survived by daughters Rosemarie Birgenheier, and Judy (Ken) Belcher, both of Billings; Bonnie (Dennis) Schumacher of Riverton; sister Leona Rand of Billings; 11 grandchildren; 28 great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews in Powell and Cody.

Cremation has taken place. Memorial services were held at Smith West Chapel in Billings on Saturday, March 3, with burial in Mountview Cemetery. Memorials may be sent to Highgate Senior Cottage or the charity of choice.

Smith Chapels was in charge of arrangements.