Beverly Jeanne “BJ” Earle, 71, of Livingston, Montana, passed away suddenly during a heart valve replacement surgery on Tuesday, March 12, 2019, at the Billings Clinic Hospital.
Born on July 16, 1947, in Eugene, Oregon, to Eugene Earle and Mary (Crane) Earle, BJ grew up in Oregon, Ohio and Baltimore. Her father was a civil engineer, and the family traveled wherever work took them, eventually that was around the world.
BJ attended Dulaney High School in Timonium, Maryland, graduating in the class of 1965. Following graduation, she attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, and majored in archaeology. During college summers, BJ worked in Yellow Stone National Park and developed a lifelong love of the park
After her graduation from BYU, BJ joined the Bureau of Land Management and served in Dillon and Miles City, Montana, and in Buffalo. Her work included surveying and recording prehistoric and historic sites and complexes, especially in hard rock mining areas. She worked on the bureau’s coal leasing program, and from 1986-2010 lived and worked in Buffalo in the Hole-in-the-Wall (Johnson County War) area. She provided input for oil and gas development, and coal, sand and gravel sales. She loved the work and was hoping to finish her career with the Park Service. Her health issues precluded that dream’s fruition.
BJ was an incredibly talented artist and, following retirement, she was drawn to Livingston by the town’s vibrant art scene. She joined Toastmasters, drew from the model with a group of like-minded artists on Wednesday nights, and in 2018 participated in Plein Aire on the Yellowstone through the Livingston Center for Art and Culture. She maintained her professional interests by participating in local historic and archaeological society meetings. She was a member of the Museum of the Rockies. It was her pleasure to volunteer for Livingston’s Yellowstone’s Gateway Museum.
In the last four years she was able to renew her old love of Egyptian archaeology by studying hieroglyphics and by traveling to Egypt where her mother worked for the American International School of Cairo in the ‘80s. She was deeply interested in new developments at the classic sites in Cairo, Luxor and the Valley of the Kings. In early 2018, she traveled to Europe to visit Egyptian collections at Berlin’s Pergamon Museum, the Louvre in Paris and the British Museum.
BJ is survived by her sister, Susan Vera Earle of Baltimore; her brother, William Michael Earle; and sister-in-law, Susan Leonard Earle, of Beaver, Pennsylvania; a half-sister, Monique Toussaint of Malmedy, Belgium; three half-brothers, Eugene Earle Jr., Edward Earle and Ernest Earle, all of the Philippines; four nephews, Jason, Jonathan, Benjamin and Brian Earle; cousins, Howard Hoy of Altoona, Iowa, Jacqueline Hoy of Humboldt, Nebraska, and Robin Latham of Boise, Idaho.
Memorials are preferred in lieu of flowers to the Yellowstone Gateway Museum as the museum plans to establish a summer internship in BJ’s honor, 118 W. Chinook St.; Livingston, MT 59047; http://www.yellowstonegatewaymuseum.org/ and 406-222-418.
A reception will be held at the Shane Lalani Center for the Arts in late May; an announcement will be made closer to the planned date. In addition, a tree will be planted with a bench on the museum grounds in BJ’s memory.
Franzen-Davis Funeral Home and Crematory has been entrusted with arrangements. To view the obituary and share condolences, visit: www.Franzen-Davis.com.