Rachel Faye Klempel, devoted mother to Levi, cherished companion to many, everyone’s favorite massage therapist and longtime resident of Bigfork, died unexpectedly in her home at the age 51.
Rachel is survived by her parents Geri and Gene Cooper, her husband Richard Klempel, her son Levi, her sisters Miriam, Debbie (Brian), and Leah (Hassan), her nieces Naomi and Joelle, her stepdaughter Rainey Klempel, grandson Tyrion, and sister and brother-in-law Doris and Jon Rost.
Rachel was born on April 8, 1969, in St. Louis. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a bachelor’s degree in social work with a strong desire to help the special needs population. After graduation she moved to San Francisco to have adventures with much-loved roommates and developed a strong connection with the wild outdoors. She worked for nonprofit agencies as an advocate for mentally challenged adults. Rachel’s love of culture inspired her world travels, taking her to the deep wilderness of Alaska, New Zealand, backpacking through Europe, WWOOFing in Spain and trekking across Morocco. Seeking a way to contribute to the environment, she worked as an intern on an organic farm in Bigfork and it was there she found her true home near the mountains. She briefly worked for the Montana Conservation Corps before pursuing a career as a massage therapist. As a gifted healer and founder of Medicine Owl Massage, she made many a sore body happy through her amazing hands and healing energy. As an active community member, Rachel felt passionately about her time on the board of Ravenwood Outdoor Learning Center, her involvement with the Glacier Jewish Community and her roles in several Bigfork Playhouse amateur productions.
Rachel was a bright, big personality who loved sharing her great sense of humor with friends, hiking, dancing, kayaking, camping, hearing live music, attending book club, cooking foods from her garden and her deepest love, that will endure forever, is her love for her son, Levi.
Rachel’s celebration of life gathering will be held online, July 12 at 2 p.m. Mountain Time, due to COVID-19.
If you would like to donate to a fund for Levi Klempel in Rachel’s beloved memory, please send checks payable to Edward Jones and send to Edward Jones, P.O. Box 2438 , Bigfork, MT 59911. Please indicate in memo if you want to contribute to Levi’s General Fund or College Fund. Another option is a fund at Glacier Jewish Community/B’nai Shalom to help with funeral expenses and support of Levi. Thank you.
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