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Patricia Rose Kraus, 85, of Great Falls, passed away March 26, 2019 at Peace Hospice of natural causes. A Memorial Service will take place Friday, April 5th at 11:00 AM in the Rose Room Chapel at Croxford Funeral Home.
Pat was born April 7,1933 in Forsyth, MT to James McGraw and Isabelle Nugent McGraw, joining her only sister Barbara.
In High School Pat met the love of her life Jim Kraus; they married May 27, 1950 and had three children, David, Kenneth and Debbi. Early in their marriage they were farmers then later Jim worked in the oil fields and moved to Great Falls where they started the Kraus Construction Company. Pat drove dump trucks, loaders and ran the office. She sometimes ran the operation while Jim worked other jobs.
Growing up on a ranch Pat was her dad’s “shadow,” Their first home had a sod roof and a dirt floor with no electricity. Times were hard but they always felt rich. Pat loved to cook and can, never wanting to run short and always ready to share with others. Her table always had a place for extras.
In 1965 Pat earned her pilot’s license and through the years she and Jim owned five different planes. She was the safer less adventurous of the two. Noting their sons’ interest in dragsters, Jim repurposed the airstrip for racing and launched the Great Falls Dragway.
Pat was very active in community groups: Montana Cowgirls, President of the Doe’s, Rainbow Garden Club, Cascade County Sunriser Extension Club, served on the Board of Cascade Preservation for the Bridge, Superintendent of Creative Arts Dept on the State Fair for 30+ years, judging Creative Arts and Food Entries for the 4-H Clubs at Fort Benton. She enjoyed nine years of handing out samples and smiles to the many customers at Sam’s.
Pat was preceded in death by her parents, James and Isabella McGraw; her husband; Jim.
She will be greatly missed by Debra and Rodney Mellin, eight grandchildren; thirteen great-grandchildren, one great-great grandchildren, and various friends and family.
Memorial donations are suggested to Benefis Peace Hospice Great Falls., MT.