Cecilia "Ceal" Theresa Jennings

A Mass of Christian burial was held on Jan. 6 at St. Matthew’s Parish in Kalispell, Mont., for Cecilia "Ceal" Theresa Jennings, who went to her eternal life with God on Thursday, Dec. 29, 2005 at the age of 85. On Jan. 9, Cecilia was laid to rest with her husband Al at Montana Veterans Cemetery in Fort Harrison, Mont.

Ceal was born Aug. 4, 1920 in Cedarburg to George and Rose Oswald. Her mother passed away when she was 9 years old and she was lovingly raised by her father George and stepmother Eleanor.

When Cecilia was 21, she moved to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, to begin working for the Civil Aeronautics Board. Moving away from her family home was bold and brave for a single woman in 1941. Ceil later moved to San Francisco, Calif., where she continued her secretarial career with a top executive of Pan Am. This was where she met the love of her life, Al.

On Dec. 7, 1946 Ceal married Al Jennings in Alameda, Calif. They continued to reside in California where they worked and raised their three daughters. Ceal was a "working mom" before there was such a term, yet her career never interfered with her dedication and devotion to her husband and children. Her career evolved from secretarial to probate paralegal, a career she continued for the past 40 years until her sudden death.

In 1991, Ceal and her husband moved to Bigfork, Mont., where she continued to share her husband’s love of flying and was his lifetime "co-pilot." Together they enjoyed many aeronautical adventures in their prized Cessna 170B. She was very active with her husband in many organizations related to flying. After Al’s death she accepted his position as Wing Commander of Montana for the World War II Glider Pilot’s Association.

Cecilia never left her hometown roots of Cedarburg behind. She maintained her subscription to the News Graphic for over 60 years where she kept up with all her hometown news for her entire life. She and her family visited often, and in June 2004 Ceal and her daughter Pinkie and son-in-law Larry attended the Oswald family reunion held in Cedarburg.

In addition to her hobbies of reading, solving the weekly New York Times crossword puzzle and playing computer solitaire, Ceal was an avid bridge player her entire adult life. She never missed an opportunity to play bridge and was active in local weekly bridge groups.

Ceal was a devoted member of St. Matthew’s Catholic Church in Kalispell, Mont. Her deep religious faith was the foundation and motivation to live her life in preparation for the day God would call her home to her eternal reward. Ceal’s charm, sweetness, laughter and love of others will be missed by everyone who knew and loved her. We remain comforted that she is with God, her husband and all of her family who preceded her in death.

Ceal is survived by her daughters Jane Ellery Jennings of Riverside, Calif., Joani (William "Ike") Eisentraut, Rose "Pinkie" (Lazzaro "Larry") Cutrone of Bigfork, Mont.; and granddaughter Cayce (Eisentraut) of Columbia Falls. She is further survived by many cousins, nieces and nephews both in the United States and Germany.

Ceal was preceded in death by her husband Al; granddaughter Jessica Eisentraut; her parents; brother Bill Oswald; and sister Rose Oswald Creeden.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent in the name of Cecilia Jennings to St. Matthew’s Catholic Church, 602 S. Main St., Kalispell, MT 59901 or Bigfork QRU, 810 Grand Ave., Bigfork, MT 59911.