Cover photo for Virginia Zwerneman's Obituary
Virginia Zwerneman Profile Photo
1939 Virginia 2022

Virginia Zwerneman

October 12, 1939 — July 14, 2022

Virginia Ann Zwerneman gained her wings on July 14, 2022, when she passed peacefully in her home due to natural causes. Born October 12,1939, in Great Falls, Montana to Emil and Beatrice (DeRusha) Durr, Virginia grew up on the Durr Ranch West of Choteau. She attended Choteau schools, graduating in 1957. Because of the distance and real winters, the family kept a house in town during the school year. Other rural children often stayed with them.

A lifelong resident of Teton County, Virginia owned and operated the Choteau Liquor Store for 35 years before selling it in 2019 when she was 80 years old. Not fully retiring, she continued to help at the store with orders and other paperwork right up until her death.

In 1961 Virginia married Lee Zwerneman in Choteau. They spent their first 3 years on the family ranch. In 1964, they built the Zwerneman Mortuary which they operated until 1980. Virginia worked at the vet clinic for Dick Temple before going into the Liquor Store in 1984.

Lee and Virginia raised 2 sons, Craig and Krist. They were able to give the boys the best of small town and ranch life. Their home was in town, but they spent as much time as possible at the ranch. The ranch became The Pine Butte Nature Preserve when it was sold to The Nature's Conservancy in 1978. Virginia and Lee were able to travel to Germany to her dads' childhood home and met her first cousins with whom they had always corresponded with. Virginia also had a couple other memorable trips, one with her mother and son Craig, down the California coast and another when she flew to Alaska and drove the Alcan Highway home with son Krist. She enjoyed attending her grandchildrens sporting and school events; when they played out of town she always listened on the radio.

Virginia is survived by sons Craig (Janie) and Krist (Michaela) both of Choteau, grandchildren Trig of Choteau, Ellie (Chance) Crabtree of Cascade, Layton of Great Falls and Michaela Blake of Choteau. Great- grandchildren Henley Lockwood (Layton) and Tessa Crabtree. Brother Charles Durr and sister-in-law Dale of Kalispell; nieces Mindy Durr and Holly Strey.

She was preceded in death by her husband Lee, both of her parents and an infant sister.

She will be remembered for her kindness and willingness to help others. She was a giver with a strong work ethic and never complained about anything. To our mother and grandmother: You raised me up, to be more than I can be may we raise you up.

Cremation has taken place under the direction of Gorder-Jensen Funeral Home with interment of ashes at the Choteau Cemetery. A celebration of Life will be held in September.

Condolences may be left on-line at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Virginia Zwerneman, please visit our flower store.


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