Ada A. ‘Ma’ McCay, 78

| November 2, 2020 8:05 AM

On Oct. 1, Ada A. McCay, affectionately known as Ma, was welcomed into the loving arms of her husband and daughters. Born Nov. 17, 1941 to Leonard and Vivian Conell, Ma gained her rough and tough nature as the only girl in a family with three brothers. She loved recalling her childhood growing up in the Turtle Lake area, picking berries, pilfering from the neighbor’s garden, and less fondly hauling water for the house. It was the plumbing system that brought much excitement when the family moved into Polson. After Ma graduated from Polson High School in 1960 she married Loyal Herried. They would go on to have two amazing daughters, Lauri and Kris. After about 10 years of marriage Ma and Loyal realized that, though they were the best of friends, they may not have been each other’s perfect partner. Even after they separated they remained lifelong best friends. Ma continued on raising her girls, supporting them through a number of jobs at places such as Western Bee, a saddle shop, waitressing and even a fondly recalled summer as a flagger for a road construction crew. It was while working at a local mechanic shop that Ma met a man by the name of Harold McCay, and a love story for the ages began. In 1980 Ma and Pa married in a double wedding ceremony with her daughter, Lauri. Her best friend, Betty, was by her side as her maid of honor. Soon after Ma gained her favorite title as grandmother with the birth of her grandsons, James and Michael Ogden. Ma's life wasn't one of sunshine and roses but of an iron will and an overwhelming capacity for love. In 1983, Lauri was involved in an automobile accident that left her paralyzed. Ma and Pa then made it their mission to see Lauri through her rehabilitation and to bring her and the boys home to live with them. Tragedy struck again in 1985 when Kris was killed in a sledding accident. Ma's incredible strength and perseverance were ever present as she continued her role as primary caregiver to Lauri and the boys. When Lauri decided she wanted to pursue her education, Ma did not hesitate to make the daily commute to and from the University in Missoula, where Lauri completed her doctorate in psychology. In addition to this, Ma's schedule was full with taking the boys to their many play dates, Boy Scout meetings and karate lessons. It was at these karate lessons that Ma gained her bonus grandson, Weston Berg, and he quickly became part of the family. Ma was in many ways everybody’s grandma; her door was always open to whomever needed or wanted to stop by. She was always prepared with the coffee pot on, the candy dish full and her herd of dogs announcing the arrival of a visitor. In her later years, she continued to foster her love of animals by spoiling her "babies." She became a great-grandmother six times over when Michael married Robin, giving her Hayden and Hailey. Weston married Emily, giving her Gaylen, Alaina, Finn and Liam. It is utterly impossible to sum up her life in the blip of this obituary. No one that knew her will forget her unique sense of humor, fierce independence, her perseverance and her overwhelming capacity to love. Before her passing she lost her parents, brothers, daughters, Harold, Loyal and her best friend, Betty. She leaves behind her grandsons, James Ogden, Michael (Robin) Ogden, Weston (Emily) Berg; her great-grandchildren; and a community who loved her dearly. At this time the family has not set a date for a service. We hope to plan a service for a later date with warmer weather and more favorable conditions. An announcement will be made at a later date.