Palma J. Wolverton, 86, of Billings, passed away Wednesday July 3, 2019.
The youngest of six children, Palma was born December 27, 1932 in Miles City, MT to Ernest and Tinka Melbraaten. Her childhood years were spent in Montana and Wyoming and she graduated from Cody High School in 1950. She attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN and Eastern Montana College in Billings MT before being accepted to Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. At Eastman she received both her Bachelor of Music degree (1954) and her Master of Music degree in Music Literature (1956).
After graduation, she accepted a faculty position at Augustana College in Sioux Falls SD. In 1963 she accepted a faculty position at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, where she taught 33 years until her retirement in 1997. Through her years of teaching, she touched the lives and inspired many students. In addition to her college teaching, she maintained a private studio up until her death.
She was a member of Music Teachers National Association, the Montana State Music Teachers Association, the Billings Music Teachers Association. and the American Liszt Society. In 2018 she was honored for 60 years of teaching by the MSMTA and BMTA. During her lifetime she performed numerous recitals in the Montana area.
While a student at EMC in Billings, she met a young man named Harry Wolverton with whom she kept in contact with during her time at Eastman and Augustana. On September 9, 1961 the couple wedded in Cody WY.
She is preceded in death by her husband of 54 years and siblings, Marie, Ed, Betty, Brick and Dorothy. She is survived by her son Scott (Lorrie) Wolverton of Billings, her daughter Mara Wolverton of Chicago IL and her two grand children Allie and Jon Wolverton of Billings and numerous nieces and nephews.
Cremation has taken place and the cremains will be interred at Mountview Cemetary in the family plot. A public memorial service will be held at Saturday July 13, at 11am at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, 1108 24th Street West in Billings.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd or the music department at Rocky Mountain College. The family would like to thank all Palma’s friends who visited, shared their stories and spent time with her during her time in hospital as well as thank the staff at Billings Clinic and Advanced Healthcare of Montana.