Darlene F. McMillen

Darlene Fernanda McMillen, 76, passed away peacefully with her family by her side at St. Vincent Hospital in Billings, Montana on September 12, 2021.  She was born to George and Dorothy (Gauer) Robertson on July 15, 1945, in Hardin, Montana.  Darlene graduated from Hardin High School in 1964.  There, she took home economics where she developed a love of sewing; making many of the clothes that she and her sisters wore. During these years she also worked for Ray Catron, raising greyhounds.  Ray even gave her one, but she spoiled that dog so much he wouldn’t race.

Darlene was the hardest working person that you’d ever meet.  Most of her life she was a waitress, first working at the A&R Cafe, where she met her husband, Victor McMillen.  He rode down from Billings on his Harley, stole her heart, and they never looked back.  Through the years she worked at many different locations in Hardin with her most recent place of employment being Dairy Queen.  Even at 76, she would out-work the 20 year olds.

Darlene was an active member of The Order of Eastern Star.  She was initiated into Jasmine Chapter No. 65, May 18, 1995, and has been an active member for 25 years.  Throughout the years, she held many offices; she held the office of Worthy Matron 6 times, treasurer 3 times.  She received the Grand Cross of Color from the International Order of Rainbow for Girls.  This is the highest honor for any adult to receive for their outstanding service; going above and beyond what is expected for Rainbow.

As a woman of many talents, you could always find Darlene hand-making countless items across a variety of crafting mediums.  She was an expert at crocheting.  Darlene always crocheted baby blankets, gifting her work to friends and family.  She loved to sew as well, and always had more than one project going on at once. At Christmas time she’d  bake pumpkin cookies, fruit cake, pumpkin bread, zucchini bread, and fudge. It filled her heart to package her baked goods and gift them to loved ones.

Darlene had a love-filled heart.  She loved yellow and blue, she loved sunflowers and butterflies.  She loved getting her nails done and watching Cowboy shows.  She loved adorning her house with pictures of her loved ones, especially those far away so that when she looked upon them she could hold them in her heart.  She loved her family and friends dearly, and showed it in countless ways, from laughing at jokes that weren’t funny to humor someone to dropping whatever she was doing if that meant helping out a friend.  Above all, she loved Jesus.  Darlene truly was a woman of the Bible, her life a demonstration of the love one would find in heaven.  Perhaps for this very reason God claimed her; no longer could He wait for such a pure and grateful soul to stand beside Him in the garden of everlasting life.

A memorial service will be Friday September 17, 2021 at 10:00AM at the Bullis Funeral Chapel.

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