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Obituary: Barbara Hoberecht

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June 8, 1930 – Dec. 26, 2022

One last gift for Big Sky

Barbara and Phil Hoberecht moved to Gallatin Canyon in 1977. Phil had served in the Air Force until he retired in 1970. They were stationed in Japan for several tours starting in 1952, and in Germany and Italy and multiple locations in the U.S. Barbara loved to travel and after Phil retired she became a travel agent in Bozeman and later worked for the Huntley Lodge and Buck’s T-4 providing tour and conference services for their clients.  Later with her best friend, Evie Sumner, she cleaned houses, starting a company called the Clean Sweeps.

We think she did it mostly for the fun of spending time with Evie. Barbara was an active volunteer. She helped caretake the Soldier’s Chapel and was a member of their board. She worked at For One Another—a camp for families living with cancer, fundraising and entertaining the kids. She danced with the Big Sky Stompers and was one of the original founders of the board for the Crail Ranch. She organized bake sale fundraisers for the Ranch and the Country Fair. She volunteered at the Tinsley House at the Museum of the Rockies, where dressed in vintage clothes she fired up the old wood stove and baked cookies or pies. Barbara was well known for her pies—she made the best pies anyone had ever tasted.  The secret was the pie dough, handed down through the family.

Phil died in 2010 of cancer and Barbara continued to live in her house on the river with her dog. One winter a bear tore the wall off the garage trying to get to the trash can. She loved the visits from the moose that bedded down on the property next to hers. They loved to eat her bushes. But most especially she loved the bald eagle that sat in a tree across the river from the house. She was convinced it was Phil watching over her.


 When it got too hard to live alone, she moved down to Santa Fe, New Mexico in 2019 to live with her daughter and husband, a granddaughter, and three great-grandchildren. Barbara passed away this last Christmas on Dec. 26 early in the morning with her beloved dog Abby by her side and her daughter holding her hand.

Barbara’s memorial will be held at Soldier’s Chapel in Big Sky on July 23 at 2:00 p.m. She is survived by her four children: daughter Christy (John), sons Kim (Suzy), David (Laura) and Todd (Finn); eight grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. We will be bringing her home to the river that she so dearly loved and to Phil, who waits and watches still.

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