On March 16, 2019, Norma Ann (Corey) Tatarka, 85, passed into the loving arms of friends and family who had gone before her. She was born on Dec. 8, 1933, in Baker, MT to Ray and Anastasia (Whalen) Corey, the third of six children.
Norma met her husband, Robert (Bob) Tatarka, while both were working for the telephone company and the two were married on June 2, 1956. Over the next 59 years, Bob and Norma raised eight children, and later welcomed 15 grandchildren and three great grandchildren into their loving home.
Norma had a 20-year career with Montana State University (MSU), working first in the Registrar’s office and then for the Federal Student Loan Program. Norma served for nearly a decade on the MSU Benefits Committee and was a member of the Montana Public Employees Association. Twice, she spoke in front of the Montana State Legislature to advocate for pay raises for lower-level state employees. A staunch supporter of the Democratic party, she volunteered for many elections in Gallatin County.
Norma enjoyed reading and cooking and had a passion for travel. But above all, she was happiest surrounded by family and friends. Norma had the gift of gab and always had time to share a story. She was patient, cheerful, and loved life. She and Bob were generous hosts; no matter how many people were at the table, there was room for another.
Norma was preceded in death by her husband Bob; her parents Ray & Stacia Corey; brothers-in-law Tony, Ray, and John Tatarka, Jim Stanley, Don Tiano, Ed Currie, and Hank Van Horn; sisters-in-law Lona Corey, Peg Tatarka, Rose Van Horn, Jo Stanley, Mary Tiano, and Bette Currie; parents-in-law John and Rose Tatarka; nephew Aaron Corey; and an infant son.
She is survived by her children, Cheryl (Smokey) Ott of Bozeman, MT, Steve (Margaret) Tatarka of Kansas City, MO, Lori (Tim) Zeiser of Frenchtown, MT, Greg (Dawn) Tatarka of Jacksonville, FL, Teresa (Gary) Klinkhammer of Mahnomen, MN, David (Michelle Gray) Tatarka of San Antonia, TX, Bernadette (Dan) Keeler of Corralas, NM, and Molly (Alessandro) Rigutto of Sterling, AK; siblings Marlene (Denzel) Young of Minneapolis, MN, James Corey of Rio Rancho, NM, Howard (Iris) Corey of Polson, MT, and Patrick (Sharrel) Corey of Scottsdale, AZ; brothers and sisters-in law Bill (Margie) Tatarka of Bozeman, MT, Veronica (John) Vaught of Willington, NV, Marge Tatarka of Billings, MT, and Carolyn Tatarka of Bozeman, MT; 15 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family thanks the staff of Bozeman Lodge, Gallatin Rest Home, Qualicare, and Hospice of Bozeman Health for their exemplary care. And is very grateful to Shelly Ziegler, Joyce and Gary Thompson, Heidi Hart, Margie Tatarka, Laura Turner, Kathy Cheney, and Teri Scott for being her second loving family.
A Rosary will be held on July 11 at 5 p.m., Dahl Funeral and Cremation Service Tribute Center, Bozeman, MT. A funeral mass will be held on July 12 at 10 a.m. at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Bozeman, MT, with a graveside service and luncheon to follow.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Montana Association of the Blind, or a charity of your choice.