Big Sky Roundup

Montana leadership mourns loss of Helena City Commissioner and ‘giant in Montana’ Eric Feaver

By: - June 23, 2022 1:10 pm

Helena City Commissioner and longtime labor union advocate Eric Feaver, 77, passed away Wednesday. Photo courtesy of the City of Helena Facebook page.

Political leaders across party lines at the national, state and local level publicly mourned the loss of Helena City Commissioner and longtime labor union advocate Eric Feaver.

Feaver, 77, died Wednesday, as reported by the Helena Independent Record Thursday morning.

The Montana Federation of Public Employees, the largest union in Montana, posted to Facebook Thursday mourning the loss of its founding President.

The post detailed Feaver’s service in Vietnam as a combat medic where he earned a Combat Medical Badge and Bronze Star and cited him as “one of the longest serving elected union officials in America” for his 36 years in leadership at the Montana Education Association, MEA-MFT, and MFPE. MFPE also noted his service as vice president of the American Federation of Teachers from 2006 until his retirement in 2020.

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“Eric Feaver was a giant in Montana,” U.S. Sen. Jon Tester tweeted Thursday morning. “No matter his role—servicemember, teacher, labor leader, or city official—Eric relentlessly served his fellow Montanans.”

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte said Feaver was a “committed public servant and veteran.”

“The state and city of Helena will miss his unmistakable voice,” Gianforte tweeted.

Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins said long before Feaver was on the commission, he was helping shape a better future for all of Montana as leader of Montana’s largest Union & as a staunch advocate for improving public education across the State.

“There are no words to emphasize how saddened I am by his passing,” Collins said.

Helena City Commissioner Sean Logan also issued condolences to the “multitudes of people he touched in a lifetime of service to the educational community, labor unions and leaders of Helena” in a Facebook post.

“His most recent foray, after his retirement, into city politics speaks to his servant’s heart. He brought a high level of collegiality, respect, commitment and curiosity to the Helena City Commission,” Logan said.

Feaver leaves behind his wife, Ellen; two daughters, Amity and Ashley; sons-in-law, Rich and TJ;  and several grandsons, according to an MFPE email. Condolences can be sent to Feaver’s family at 901 Flowerree in Helena, Montana 59601, according to the MFPE post.

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