Jan (Janice) Marie Breitenfeldt was born in Wolf Point, Montana on June 10th, 1957 to Dorothy and Leo Zimmer. She was tragically killed May 19th, 2019 in a vehicle accident along with her daughter, Skye Breitenfeldt, while returning home to Whitehall from an American Kennel Club (AKC) conformation dog show in Logan, UT.
Jan is survived by her husband of 30 years Todd Breitenfeldt, son Matthew Combs of Billings, MT, daughter Sari (Breitenfeldt) Dersam of Laramie, WY, and mother Dorothy Zimmer of Wolf Point, MT. She was the oldest of 7 siblings including brothers James Zimmer of Anchorage, AK, Tim Zimmer of Oswego, MT, Bill Zimmer of Park City, MT, and Loren Zimmer of Wolf Point, MT, and sisters Mary (Zimmer) Beil of Reed Point, MT, and Teresa (Zimmer) Jones of Hinsdale, MT. Also Todd’s parents Dorvan and Diane Breitenfeldt of Cheney, WA, and sisters Cathy (Breitenfeldt) Smith of Medical Lake, WA, and Lisa Breitenfeldt of East Valley, WA, as well as her special friend Judie Lucas of New Meadows, ID.
Jan grew up riding horses on the ranch and as the oldest sibling was very involved in taking care of her rambunctious younger siblings. She graduated from Wolf Point High School where she was active in Drama and excelled in academics. Jan earned a degree in Pharmacy from the University of Montana, Missoula. She worked as a pharmacist in several Montana locations including St. James Community Hospital, Butte and Whitehall Drug, Whitehall. She enjoyed all aspects of the pharmacy profession but loved hospital pharmacy and compounding the best. For the past decade she worked as a relief pharmacist throughout Montana so she could schedule working around dog shows which were her passion. In recent years she spent most of her work time at Option Care in Bozeman and Driscoll Drug in Butte.
Jan enjoyed machine knitting, playing the violin and piano, shopping, auctions, and was a voracious reader. She loved to learn new subjects and was currently studying violin on-line and was creating on-line classes. Jan was a superb cook and loved to bake. Tradition was very important to her. Her holiday meals, baked goods and caramels are legendary and her cooking at events such as AKC pointing dog field trials was a sure crowd pleaser. An engrossing hobby for Jan was soap making (soaping). Many of her artistically designed and intriguingly scented soaps looked “good enough to eat”. Her unscented soaps and shampoos were very appreciated by family and friends during big game season. Jan also liked snow skiing and enjoyed traveling. She and her husband Todd lead EF Educational Tours involving high school students to locations including Mexico, several European tours, and Egypt.
Jan’s true passion was showing and breeding Pekingese dogs, as well as mentoring others with dog showing. Several of her Pekes are ranked nationally in AKC dog showing and advanced to Bronze and Silver level Grand Championships. She also bred and owned Oscar, the smallest known Pekingese to earn an AKC Championship and Grand Championship. Jan was a member of the Helena Kennel Club and the Montana Brittany Club (MTBC) and served as the secretary of several MTBC Field Trials and most recently of an MTBC pointing dog Hunt Test near Billings in April. Jan was well known and respected in the dog show world. Her presence and beautiful Pekingese will be sorely missed at dog shows throughout the west.
Jan was a quiet, modest person who was fiercely loyal to family and friends. Jan was appalled at the “current divisive political climate in this great country.” She was disappointed in extremism on both ends of the spectrum. Jan advocated for “fair, compassionate, reasonable, cooperative, science-based decision making.”
The family offers a special Thank You to the wonderful Whitehall community and to the many superb people who reached out and offered support.
Jan will be deeply, deeply missed by all whose lives she touched.
Skye Lynn Breitenfeldt
Skye was born March 19, 1990 in Butte, MT. She was tragically killed May 19th, 2019 in a vehicle accident along with her mother, Jan Breitenfeldt, while returning home to Whitehall from an American Kennel Club (AKC) conformation dog show in Logan, UT. Skye lived her whole wonderful life in Whitehall, MT. She was born with Down syndrome (trisomy-21), a reversed heart and several other heart defects. She had a challenging start to life but grew into an amazing lady. Skye and her parents were involved in the Down Syndrome Support Group of Butte for a number of years.
Skye is survived by her father
Todd Breitenfeldt of Whitehall, MT, brother Matthew
Combs of Billings, MT, sister Sari (Breitenfeldt)
Dersam of Laramie, WY, grandparents Dorothy Zimmer
of Wolf Point, MT, and Dorvan and Diane Breitenfeldt
of Cheney, WA.
Skye was active in Special Olympics and liked to do walking, bocce ball, basketball, bowling, and especially snowshoeing. When she was younger Skye participated in the Whitehall O-mok-see horse events, downhill skiing, fishing at Ruby Reservoir, and camping. She always loved to travel, especially to visit her many relatives. Skye had a knack for immediately falling asleep at the beginning of any car trip. One of her favorite trips was her family’s tour to France, England, Scotland, and Ireland in 2005. She loved to dye her hair and have her fingernails painted vibrant colors. She liked to sign her “full” name, Skye Lynn Miss Pie Breitenfeldt, in permanent ink on almost anything around the house. Skye truly enjoyed her music, eating her mother’s special meals, holidays, and watching her extensive collection of DVDs.
Skye, like her mother, had a passion for participating in American Kennel Club (AKC) conformation dog shows and mastered the skills that it took to handle Pekingese dogs in the show ring. She would often draw a crowd and an applause while showing. She loved her Pekingese and regularly helped with their care. Her favorite way to celebrate after showing her dogs was to visit both the shopping and food vendors at the show. She would tour around the dog show grounds and would sometimes stop and dance her own little private dance of joy. Skye was always a positive member of the dog show community and will be sorely missed at the shows that she regularly attended throughout the west.
The family would like to thank the Whitehall community, BSW community, dog show community, pointing dog community, biological weed control community, and friends and relatives for the wonderful outpouring of support and comfort.
Skye was a quiet, unassuming person with kind soul and gentle heart. She loved family, peace and quiet, and her own safe environment and routines. Skye lovingly kept track of her calendar by crossing off each passing day and inscribing all birthdays and important events. Her favorite person in the world was her big brother, Matt, and she very much adored her aunts, uncles, and cousins.
The next time you watch an AKC dog show, please think of Skye.
|Oscar and Sophie are litter mates.
Oscar is what is called a "sleeve" sized Pekingese weighing in at a strapping 2.5 lbs. He may be the smallest Champion/Grand Champion in recorded history...
Myka earns Best of Breed and more Grand Championship show points with Jan handling. June, 2013.
Jan earns a Major Win with Lexi, June, 2013.
Myka earns her Grand Championship at the Enumclaw, WA Pekingese Specialties August, 2012. Sari is handling.
Senza, the number one AKC Grand Champion show pointed Pekingese bitch in the Nation for 2011.
GCH Dragonfly Ticked To Amore
Rated in the top 5 in the Nation in Peke Grand Champion points and #1 bitch.
As of Oct., 2014.
Skye showing Lexi in Helena, MT Sept. 2014.
GCH Dragonfly Sparkling Imagination
[pup name Holly] Out of Senza and Tommy.
WON Pekingese Winners Bitch AND an Award of Merit at the Westminster dog show 2-10-14.
Skye is very happy to earn a Major Win with Lexi! June, 2013.
Cookie earns a Major Win with Skye handling. We co-own Cookie with good friend Shirley. June, 2013.
Skye and Cookie earn a Major Win in Montana. June, 2013.
Skye finishes Cookie's show Championship! Great Falls, MT, June, 2013.
Skye in the Show Ring