Billie Hett

Billie Hett of Buffalo, South Dakota, died on Saturday, November 14, 2020 at her home in Spearfish at the age of 71.
Billie Jean Fortune was born on November 7, 1949 in Philip, SD to Howard and Irene Fortune of Quinn, SD. Billie was named after her father whose nickname was Bill.
Irene and the children moved into Philip for school from where Billie graduated with her dear friends in the Class of 1968.
Billie then enrolled at Black Hills State for a year and rarely missed a class at the Campus Pub. Following her college days, she worked at the Philip Nursing Home.
She married Donn Hett on May 9, 1975. The couple made their home on the Hett Ranch near Buffalo, SD. It was here that they raised their children, cattle, and sheep for 45 years.
With a strong determination to get things done, Billie was very involved in her community. She belonged to various organizations including EMT’s, Book Club, Investment Club, Quilt Guild, and an active member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church and Altar Society. Billie and Donn were delighted to chaperone several 4-H trips to the Denver Stock Show.
Curious by nature, she enjoyed learning and doing new things. She had many great adventures after discovering Babes with Bullets, a camp to empower and teach women hunting and shooting skills.
Billie enjoyed spending time and learning to quilt with friends. Her quilting ability resulted in many beautifully crafted quilts for her family.
Always ready for a good time when the work was done, Billie and Donn often took a mid-winter trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico before calving season began. They could be found on the dance floor many places including the German Tent. They enjoyed several events in the Hills including Cool Deadwood Nights, The Cowboy Christmas Ball, Cowboy Poetry gatherings, following the Lyle Berry Band, and being with their friends at Guadalajara’s and The Sunshine Saloon. Billie loved meeting new people in her travels and getting to know them and their story.
Her lively and fun-loving personality drew people to her wherever she went. Billie had a hearty laugh, quick wit and was full of good humor. She entertained everyone with her funny stories and anecdotes.
Her nine grandchildren were her deepest heartfelt passion. She was a spunky Grandma who loved spending time baking cookies, praying, and playing with her grandkids. She could make her presence known at their events with her signature “Fortune” cheer. They were the light of her life.
Grateful for having shared her life are her husband, Donn of Buffalo; children, Jason Hett, and significant other Cassandra Shull of Brookings, Kristi (Tim) Peart of Amarillo, TX, Tyler (Marisa) Hett of Buffalo, and Janie (Dave Cromes) Hett of Spearfish; step-daughters, Holly Hett and Jodi Noll; grandchildren, Mackenna, Macade, and Troi Peart, Camden, Keegan, Kelby, and Quade Hett, and Nathan and Reagan Cromes; sisters, Kay Williams of Philip, Judy (Dan) Harrington of Ridgefield, WA, Pam (C.K.) Dale of Howard, and Mary Lou (Pat) Guptill of Quinn; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Howard and Irene Fortune; sister, Janet Waara; and brother, Scott Fortune as an infant.
A visitation was held from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, November 18, at St. Paul's Catholic Church in Belle Fourche with a rosary and vigil service starting at 7 p.m.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, November 19, at St. Paul's Catholic Church in Belle Fourche with Father Zane Pekron as celebrant.
Both services were live-streamed and can be viewed from her obituary page on Rush Funeral Home’s website.
A private family burial will be held at a later date at the Grand River Cemetery on the Hett Ranch.
Arrangements are with Rush Funeral Home of Philip.

The Pioneer Review

221 E. Oak Street
Philip, SD 57567
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