Sally R. Rumelhart, 71 | Western News

Sally R. Rumelhart, 71, passed away Feb. 1, 2022, from natural causes at her home in Libby. She was born Sylvia Ruth Nelson (but went by Sally most of her life) to Lloris and Ruth (Lenz) Nelson on Jan. 22, 1951, the second of six children.

Sally grew up on a farm near Rosholt, S.D., and spent the first five years of school in a one-room county schoolhouse. She later graduated from Rosholt High School.

She married right out of high school. Four wonderful boys — Quentin, Shane, Ryan and Brett Cottingham — were born out of the union. Unfortunately, the husband had control and rage issues, and the marriage ended after 15 years.

She tried marriage again a few years later, but he was an alcoholic, and so that did not last long. Many years later she tried marriage again, but he died of a heart attack two months after the wedding.

Finally, in her late 50s, she married one more time, this time to Paul Rumelhart, the love of her life, finally!

During all that drama, Sally raised her four sons plus gave a home to many “stray puppies,” as she called them, when they needed it. Her door was never locked.

For survival, Sally was a certified nursing assistant, medical assistant, ward secretary, motel owner, florist, bartender and even a vacuum salesman. Finally, at the age of 46, she went to college for landscape design and started her own business. For the next 15 years she gave beautiful landscapes to homeowners and businesses alike.

Sally was artistic and loved creating whimsical things, painting anything from pictures to rocks. She liked reading and spending time in her gardens when not creating something else. Sally spent many, many happy hours outside (usually barefoot) among her flowers.

She loved her whole family with all her heart! Between her children and Paul’s, they have eight wonderful kids, 14 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren, all of whom brought them both so much joy.

Sally is survived by her husband, Paul; three brothers, Larry, Brad and Dan Nelson; and two sisters, Linda Forsberg and Gloria Huntington.

A celebration of Life will be scheduled for a later date. She wants this to be a simple, casual time (no need to dress up) for sharing stories and memories from everyone. Sally wishes she could be there to hear them.

Arrangements are by Schnackenberg Funeral Home in Libby. Online condolences and memories may be shared at