Ella Faye Wetzel, 88, of Polson, passed away on November 12, 2021 at Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Polson after living a long full life. Born on November 25, 1932, to Charles and Ella (Cane) Monroe in East Glacier. Ella Faye was one of 12 siblings. She was a proud member of the Blackfeet Tribe and spent her early years working the Monroe ranch located at East Glacier. As an adult, she worked many jobs to support her children. She is best known for her cooking abilities, serving as a cook for numerous restaurants and sorority houses in northwest Montana. Ella Faye was known by many for her fun-loving spirit, her way of offering unconditional acceptance, and as a generous caregiver. She was hard to disappoint. She had an abundance of friends and many who met her came to claim her as their sister, mother, or grandmother. She welcomed many into her home and lived by the rule of offering food and comfort to those that visited or wandered in. Ella Faye moved her family to Missoula in 1970 to attend Missoula Vo-Tech as part of the Tribe’s relocation program. She has resided on the Flathead Indian Reservation for the past 21 years and it gave her great joy to have the children of Turtle Lake knock on her door to ask “Grandma” for a treat. She always made sure she had cookies or popsicles to hand out. She loved sharing her stories of growing up on the ranch and the many adventures she had during her life but most of all, she loved everyone in her family “a bushel and a peck.”
She is survived by her children; Joseph Wetzel, Sr. of Missoula, MT, Dave (Lynn) Tyndall of Minden, NV; Berna Gilham of Polson, MT, Barbara (Loren "Bum") Stiffarm of Harlem, MT, Cheryl (Roy) Rondo of Frenchtown, MT; and Leslie Ann Shaw of Fairfield, MT. Siblings Joanne Turner, Wesley Monroe, Terry Winchester, Royleen Hard, Royarnold Cornelison, numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. Ella was preceded in death by her father and mother; seven siblings-Baby Monroe, Edna Mae Naldrett, Dolores Monroe, Clem Monroe, Hugh Monroe, and Robert “Ducky” Jackson; a daughter Daphne Tailfeathers; a son Charles “Chuck” Gilham; and grandsons Christopher and Brian.
Pastor Dean Buffalo will conduct the funeral services. The Lake Funeral Home has been entrusted with services and arrangements. Visitation will be held at 6:30 P.M. on November 14, 2021 and Funeral Services will be held at 10:00 A.M. on November 15, 2021 at the Lake Funeral Home, 101 Sixth Avenue East, Polson, Montana.
The family would like to offer special thanks to those that shared their kindness and support before and after her passing including St. Joseph’s, Partners In Home Care, CSKT Tribal Health, CSKT Housing, Polson Senior Center, and her Turtle Lake neighbors.