Obituary: Rose Ann (Clemow) Penwell

Posted at 9:53 AM, Jun 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-11 11:53:05-04

Heaven gained a rodeo queen Friday, May 17 as Rose Ann (Clemow) Penwell passed peacefully at home with her beloved husband of 64 years, J. David, by her side.

A world traveler, business owner and ranch girl, Rose Ann had a life well-lived. Her three sons and their families adored her. Her grace, compassion, and wisdom were unmatched.

Born at home Dec. 7, 1933 in Jackson, MT to Tom and Rose Clemow at the H Lazy J Ranch, Rose Ann grew up fishing the Big Hole River, branding cattle and putting up hay with her five siblings. She attended Rowland Hall Boarding School in Salt Lake City and began college at University of Montana where she met the love of her life, Dave. Upon seeing handsome Dave for the first time as she descended the steps of her sorority house, Rose Ann proclaimed, “I’m going to marry that man.”

Rose Ann returned to school at Montana State, earning a B.A. in Art in 1974. She and Dave built a successful law practice and she was active in local and State politics and served on many civic boards, including the Museum of the Rockies.

An accomplished potter, painter, horsewoman, antique collector, skier, and angler, Rose Ann’s love of the arts and all things Montana will be remembered through the art she created. She represented the best of all things Montana and the state was part of her soul.

Rose Ann was a devoted mother and grandmother. She is survived by her husband, Dave; sons, James Cole (Shari) of Clearwater/Las Vegas, Scott (Sherry) of San Diego, and David (Colleen) of Madison, WI; and grandchildren, Jason, Colen, Anderley, Murphy, Grace, and Taylor. She is further survived by siblings, Bea (Tom) Mitchell, Diane (Brent) Johnson, and Tom (Donna) Clemow; in-laws, Diana and George; and many nieces and nephews.

Special thanks to family friends Al and Jane Geissler and Doug Quam, and the staff at Cottonwood Case Management for their ongoing care and dedication.

A celebration of Rose Ann’s life will be held at the family home on Saturday, July 27 from 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Museum of the Rockies.

Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service.