Alma Cecelia Zoellner Idol Montgomery was born in a log house in Perryville, MO. She was baptized in the Catholic Church, and to her Lord, family, and friends, she remained a ”good and faithful servant.”
The 7th of 13 children of Louis and Albertie (Renaud) Zoellner, she understood the merits of responsibility, hard work, and dependability. Alma was kind, insightful, resilient, and determined: traits which defined her life of 97 years and 8 months.
She attended 1st thru 8th grade in a one-room schoolhouse and two years of high school before she was forced to discontinue her formal education and aid in the support of this large family. As a seamstress, a laundress, a shoe factory worker, and yodeling & singing in a medicine show, she contributed monetarily. Additionally, she cared for her family by cooking, cleaning, overseeing the younger ones, and working in the fields. Life was hard with little leisure or affirmation.
In 1943, at the age of 18, Alma moved to Denver, Colorado, where, in 1946, she and her beloved Joe Idol were married. There, they raised their sons, David and Larry. Side-by-side, the couple enjoyed life and supported their separate business endeavors: "Idol Optics” and “Alma’s Attic” - an antique shop which reflected her lifelong appreciation of Victorian era treasures. Joe passed away in 1990. In 2002, Tim Montgomery swept her off her feet. The two were inseparable until Tim’s sudden passing in 2006.
“Alma, Auntie, Nan” loved to dance, meet friends for a game of bridge, golf, bowling, or a 5 o’clock cocktail. She was a skilled seamstress, chef, and ceramicist. But above all, she was a devoted wife and mother. Detail and patience were no stranger to this beloved woman who once painted glass eyes for the blind and who, single-handedly, built and installed new kitchen cabinets. Alma’s giggle reflected her “life of no regrets.”
For the past decades, macular degeneration rendered her blind. Yet, Alma was blessed with the most loyal following; friends and family. Their attentiveness and devotion allowed her, until her passing, to live in her home, unassisted. She would often comment that she couldn’t understand the reasons for this kindness - the answer was simple, Alma was easy to love.
Her son, David, preceded her in death. In November of 2022, Alma was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Two weeks prior to Alma’s death, her son, Larry passed away. Her bright blue eyes, glazed with a mother’s unbearable grief, are now free of sorrow, disease, and filled with the glorious visions of eternity.
Alma is survived by three devoted sisters, Edith Ernst, Norma Meyer and Ruby Winschel and a multitude of loved ones– all whose lives she changed for the better.
She will be inurned in Chapel Hill Cemetery, Centennial, CO.