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Marlys C. Mercer

Marlys C. (McElvain) Mercer, 96, passed Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020.

Services will be held next summer in Hinsdale, Mont.

She was born June 21, 1924, in Hinsdale to Robert J. and Alice (Jones) McElvain. She was the oldest of four children. Upon graduating from Hinsdale High School in 1942 she went to Seattle, Wash., to work in the shipyards and for Boeing in the war effort. She was proud to be a Rosie the Riveter.

While in Seattle, Marlys met George R. "Sam" Mercer. They were married in North Carolina on Jan. 6, 1945. They had two children, Gary Robert and Terry Lee. They had one granddaughter, Colleen Mercer, and two great-granddaughters, Emily and Daytona Martin.

When Sam returned home from the war they moved to Texas where Sam worked construction. They moved back to Montana in 1949 because Marlys wanted Terry Lee to be born in Montana. Upon Terry Lee's graduation, Marlys and Sam moved to Nevada to do construction. They returned to Hinsdale after Sam retired.

After retiring they spent over 20 years traveling in their motor home to Arizona for the winter. They met many friends. These friends continued to call and send cards and even stop in to visit her after she could no longer make the trip to Yuma.

In May of 2018 she moved to Shelby, Mont., and lived at the Marias Heritage Center. While there she met several new friends who encouraged her to play cards and bingo. She was extremely lucky at bingo.

Marlys was a member of the United Methodist Church of Hinsdale, Milk River chapter of the Eastern Star, and National Rosie the Riveters.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Sam; her brother Robert J. "Bud" McElvain Jr .; sister Sharon Robinson; son Terry Lee Mercer; and great-granddaughter, Emily Martin.

She is survived by her sister Maxine O'Brien (Kenneth) of Kalispell, Mont .; son Gary R Mercer (Barb), of Shelby; granddaughter Colleen Mercer; great-granddaughter Daytona Martin; and numerous nephews, nieces, and cousins.

Memorials may be sent to Hinsdale ambulance service, Hinsdale Methodist Church, or the charity of your choice.

Condolences can be made to Marlys' memorial page at


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