Suzy Ronfeldt recalls stories her parents, Betty Jennings Muldown and Lloyd “Mully” Muldown, related about when they were lookouts on Whitefish Mountain Lookout near Whitefish, Montana in 1942, with Suzy, a three-month old baby. Suzy discusses her mother being born in Whitefish, and meeting her father, who was from Minnesota, when he moved to Whitefish to teach chemistry and physics at Whitefish High School. Suzy remembers them talking of their early life at Big Mountain (ski resort), where they got engaged and married in 1940. She said her father needed to supplement his teaching salary and began working as a lookout. She said an advantage to Whitefish Lookout was being able to drive a short distance. They had lots of visitors, including her mother’s parents, who brought laundry and groceries. Her mother mentioned how hard it was to have a baby in cloth diapers and nothing to clean diapers with. Suzy recalls that the lookout was a tower with many steps, and her mother said she hauled things up and down those steps, including Suzy. Two dogs, one a great dane and the other a cocker spaniel, also shared the lookout with them. Her parents discussed spectacular lightning storms. Suzy said Mully served in World War II afterwards in the Phillippines and Japan, including going to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He was also one of the founders of the Big Mountain Ski Resort in Whitefish, going to the 1936 “Hitler” Olympics, where he learned to make ski bindings. Suzy said her mother deserves much credit for sharing duties on Whitefish Lookout and being part of the early ski crowd. Suzy thinks it was a romantic time for her parents on the lookout.
Suzy Muldown Ronfeldt; Whitefish Lookout; Betty Jennings Muldown; Lloyd “Mully” Muldown; Lloyd Muldown; Hellroaring Ski Club; Big Mountain Ski Resort; Scotty Beaton; Numa Ridge; Shared duties; Children
Northwest Montana Lookout Association Oral History Project, OH 453, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library
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OH_453_016.mp3; OH_453_016.pdf; OH_453_016.srt
Ronfeldt, Mary Suzanne, "Suzy Rondfeldt Interview, August 21, 2021" (2021). Northwest Montana Lookout Association Oral History Project. 16.