Betty Irene (Gillespie) Lawellin

Betty Irene (Gillespie) Lawellin, 93, of Livingston passed away Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, at Livingston Health and Rehabilitation. A graveside memorial service with Veteran’s honors will be held in the spring at the Mountain View Cemetery.

Betty was born on June 17, 1923, in Maple Hill, Kansas, to Raymond and Myrtle (Clements) Gillespie. The family came to live in Glendive in 1936, and then relocated to Livingston in 1937. Betty was a member of the 1941 Park County High School graduating class. Following her graduation, she attended nursing school in Bozeman, completing her studies in 1944. Once she completed her training, she enlisted in the United States Army on Jan. 30, 1945. She served as a Second Lieutenant and received an honorable discharged on June 4, 1946.

Once she was back in Livingston, she met Joseph Louis Lawellin and on Feb. 19, 1959, she was united in marriage to Joe at the Little White Chapel in Las Vegas, Nev. Betty blended into the Lawellin family quickly. She became fast friends with her sister-in-law Marilou. You could often find her cheering on family and friends at rodeos, O-MoK-Sees and polo matches. She and Joe would go for plane rides throughout the area when Joe was still operating Mission Flying Service in the ’50s and ’60s.

Betty worked at the Lott Hospital as a surgical nurse and at the Livingston Clinic as a nurse for Doctors Walker and Harris. She also owned and operated Brown’s Corner Store, which was on the southeast corner of S. Main and Callendar.

Betty and Joe traveled all over the world together. Their trips included Hong Kong, Spain, Hawaii, Mexico and the Caribbean. Betty enjoyed any social occasion. She loved to entertain for family and friends. She belonged to Bridge Clubs, thoroughly enjoying spending hours with her friends.

Betty is survived by her stepson Joe A. Lawellin and his wife, Chris, of Livingston; granddaughters Courtney Jo Lawellin of Livingston and Dusty Jo Lawellin-Mendoza and her husband, Lupè, of Corvallis, Oregon; and brother David Gillespie and his wife, Elizabeth, of Hillsboro, Oregon. She is also survived by nieces and nephews Robert Gillespie and his son Marco; Bradley Gillespie; Heather Gillespie; John Gillespie and his wife, Iris, and their children Sela, Elam and Lina, who was the latest addition to the family born on Betty’s birthday; John MacDonald and his wife, VJ; Scott MacDonald and his wife, Krista; and Heidi Ferdinand and her husband, Robb. In addition, she is survived by other relatives and many dear friends.

She was predeceased by her husband, Joe Lawellin, who passed on June 5, 2012; parents Raymond and Myrtle Gillespie; and sister Virginia MacDonald and her husband, Francis.

Arrangements are under the care of Franzen-Davis Funeral Home and Crematory. Online condolences may be shared at