Irma "Betty" Zoanni, 93, Sidney, MT

Irma "Betty" Zoanni, 93, passed away peacefully on Sunday, Jan. 21, 2024, at the Sidney Health Center with family by her side.

Betty was born March 11, 1930, to Ingvald and Ethel Iverson on their homestead near Comertown, MT. She attended school in Comertown before transferring to Culbertson High School for her senior year. She attended Eastern Montana College and the University of Montana, earning a teaching certificate.

Betty married John "Jack" Zoanni on June 4, 1952. They raised five children on a farm and ranch in rural Culbertson. After Jack passed in 2001, she moved to Sidney.

Betty taught fifth grade and music in Culbertson and Sidney. She later taught music for many years at rural schools and East Fairview Elementary School. She gave piano and accordion lessons to numerous family members and neighborhood children.

Music was a large part of Betty's life. She had perfect pitch and taught herself piano on an old pump organ. She accompanied family and community groups in talent shows and at other area functions. She was frequently heard playing "old time music" in community centers and nursing homes. She enjoyed being a member of Sweet Adelines in Culbertson and Sidney.

Betty was a devout Lutheran, attended Bible study, and often played organ or piano for services. Betty was also very artistic. She sewed many of her childrens' clothes and hundreds of quilts. She loved to draw and paint, including charcoal, oil, and acrylic mediums. She won numerous awards, including the Richland County Fair Best of Show. Other hobbies included photography with which she preserved precious family memories and stories. Betty had a work of poetry published. She participated in community groups and clubs such as the Sioux Pass Homemakers and C'DARS. She loved to play Scrabble with anyone who would challenge her, usually winning!

Betty is survived by her children Robert "Bob," Jerry, and Rita (Marc); daughters-in-law Brenda and Darla; grandsons Tyler (Sandra), Chris, Brad (Karli), Derek, Ryan, Matt (Sharlene), and Kenny; and great-grandchildren Hannah, Noah, Paisley, Addison, Paxton, Matthew, and Marc. She is preceded in death by her husband John "Jack"; children Linda and Loren; grandson Mark; and siblings Pearl, Howard, and Rodney.

Memorial gifts may be made to BrightFocus Foundation for macular degeneration research or to a local school or community music group of your choice.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.


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