Starshine, Dorothy Jane Matchett Stockton, passed away May 14, 2023, in Monroe. Starshine was born to Anna Lois Fields and James Franklin Matchett in Tulsa, Oklahoma, July 31, 1928. The family moved to Seagraves, Texas. Starshine grew up on her horse, Traveler, who taught her how to rope calves and barrel racing in rodeos. She trained a beautiful black Arabian named Flicka.
During WWII, she initiated a scrap metal drive, grew a Victory Garden and won a sharpshooter’s medal from the American Rifle Association.
In 1950, she earned a B.S. in chemistry and physics from the University of Texas in Austin, Texas. She married Robert Wayne (Bob) Stockton in 1950. They had four children, Lois Gilge, Havre, Montana; Susan Nelson, Monroe; Clifford, Hagerman, Idaho; and Thomas, Helena, Montana.
After living in Wichita Falls, Texas, and Hutchinson, Kansas, they moved to Kalispell, Montana in 1954. Glacier National Park became a playground for hiking and camping in the summer and sledding in the winter.
A move to Helena, MT in 1965 allowed Starshine to obtain a teaching certificate from Carroll College. Upon retiring from teaching in 1995, she moved to Great Falls, Montana.
For many years she wrote an astronomy column for the Independent Record, “Helena’s Heavens” and led star viewings. Upon learning the observatory at Carroll College wasn’t functioning, Bob repaired it and Starshine did public viewing there. Many called her the “Star Lady” which led to her name change, Starshine, following her divorce.
When Starshine was 35, she experienced her first Quaker meeting and her spiritual life became real. She felt she now walked with God as a steady companion.
Starshine loved adventure and challenging herself. To celebrate her 50th birthday, she ran in the Governor’s Cup marathon. She hiked to Phantom Ranch in the Grand Canyon to celebrate her 70th birthday. Starshine enjoyed long distance bicycle riding and she continued to ride her bike until her 90s. She traveled around the world with her mother, followed by hiking Granite Peak, the highest natural point in Montana. At the age of 90, she celebrated her birthday by hiking to Memorial Falls and was able to stand under the waterfalls.
Starshine canoed the Yukon. She even travelled 40 hours by train to see the great polar bear gathering near Churchill, Manitoba, and to view the northern lights.
Her mantra was LOVE IS ALL THERE IS!
Starshine was preceded in death by her mother; her father; her sister, Lois Ann Matchett; a granddaughter, Katherine Anna Lois Gilge Jiron; and a grandson, Kirby William Gilge.
She is survived by her children Lois (Kent) Gilge, Susan (Greg) Nelson, Clifford Stockton (Marcia Hughes), and Thomas (Becky) Stockton; and 18 grandchildren, 38 great grandchildren and 2 great-great-grandchildren.
The children, grandchildren and great grandchildren would like to thank all the staff of the Monroe Canyon Assisted Living facility for the excellent care and the special meals prepared for her during her last year of life.
There will be an internment for Starshine’s life at the Highlands Cemetery in Great Falls, Montana, Saturday, June 24, at 10 a.m.
Donations can be sent to Right Sharing of World Resources, a Quaker program to help women in third world countries survive. RSWR, 101 Quaker Hill Drive, Richmond, IN 47374.