Mary Alice Bice
Mary Alice Bice, formally of Deer Lodge, Montana, passed away surrounded by family on July 21, 2021, at St. Luke’s hospital in Meridian, Idaho.
Mary Alice was born in Butte, Montana, to Verna (Arnold) and Charles Vincent on May 9, 1936, the third of four children. Mary was raised in Virginia City and then Anaconda, Montana, graduating from Anaconda High School in 1954. On December 28, 1955, she married John Shaul; they had three children together, Rick, Al and Leianne. Mary and John later divorced in 1965. In 1969, Mary Alice moved to Deer Lodge and married Robert Bice; together they had one child, Mark. Mary Alice and Robert were later divorced in 1973. Mary Alice continued living in Deer Lodge until 1991, when she moved to Warm Springs to be closer to work. Mary Alice then moved to Idaho to be closer to all of her children in 1996.
Throughout the years, Mary Alice worked many jobs to provide for her family. She was a waitress, bartender (Broken Arrow), hotel clerk (Deer Lodge Hotel), worked at the Montana State Alcoholics Hospital at Galen and then finished 20 years working for the state as a nurse’s aide at Warm Springs, Montana. After moving to Idaho, she worked until retirement at MCMS (computer chip manufacturing).
Mary Alice enjoyed spending time with friends and family. She bowled on leagues and traveled around Montana with her best friends Audie, Lee, Judy and Connie. After retirement, she remained close friends with several co-workers through the years. Mary Alice also found a new special companion, Jim Garland of Emmett, Idaho. They spent most weekends in Donnelly, Idaho, at his cabin on the lake. They also traveled to Texas and throughout Idaho and Montana. They were extremely close and she was very saddened at his death in 2013. Mary Alice also had several hobbies she really enjoyed, including reading and crocheting blankets for everyone. Her blankets were lovingly made for her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and as donations to several community fundraisers. Mary Alice could always be found watching tennis, the Olympics, wrestling, her favorite baseball team the Atlanta Braves and western movies. One of her favorite joys in life was spoiling her two little dogs Bobi and Buddy.
Mary Alice’s greatest accomplishments in recent years were surviving non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, being in full remission and being very proud that she never contracted COVID-19.
Mary Alice was preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Verna Vincent of Anaconda, Montana; brother James “Jim” Vincent of Anaconda, Montana; sister Andrea Vincent Fraser of Missoula, Montana; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.
Mary Alice is survived by her brother David (Helen) Vincent of Spokane, Washington; her sons Rick (Charlene) Shaul of Elliston, Montana, Al (Diane) Shaul of Meridian, Idaho, and Mark (Shannon) Bice of Boise, Idaho; her daughter Leianne Hintz (Gib) of Meridian, Idaho; grandchildren John (Heather) Shaul of Nampa, Idaho, Jessie (Melanie) Shaul of Emmett, Idaho, Nichole (Dre) Percell of Nampa, Idaho, Josh (Alyssa) Shaul of Helena, Montana, Aiden Bice and Saoirse Bice of Boise ID; great-grandchildren Nakayia, Amirrah, Talayna and Kezeric Percell of Nampa, Idaho, William Shaul of Nampa, Idaho: and numerous cousins and friends.
Cremation will be handled by the Cremation Society of Idaho. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, September 4, 2021, with a time and location in Idaho to be determined. In Mary Alice’s honor, please consider donating to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society or the American Cancer Society.
Steven Michael Wood (Woody)
Steven Michael Wood (Woody) passed away July 15th, 2021, at his home in Garrison, Montana.
Steve was born September 17, 1959, to mother Judith Wood in Helena, Montana. He grew up and attended schools in Deer Lodge, Montana, until enlisting in the United States Army and then being stationed in Germany. Later he returned to civilian life in Deer Lodge, Montana, working several jobs in the area to support his family.
Fishing and hunting with his son Jake were a couple of his favorite pastimes.
Steve was a very generous man and often invited his family up for a Sunday dinner and a hand at chess, cribbage or pinochle. But watch out, he was good at pouncing his opponent, fast pegging in cribbage or out beating his opponent at chess.
For the last few years, he stepped in to help his mother run the Garrison Mercantile.
He is survived by his two sons, Jake (Amy) Wood and Mike Campbell, and his grandchildren Zachary, Alexa, and Emerson. Additionally, he is mourned by his mother, Judith Wood; sisters Rhonda (Red) Amdahl, Teresa (Dennis) Pomeroy and Michele (Carrie) Pomeroy; many nieces and nephews; and great nieces and nephews. Steve was preceded in death by his (Lori Wood) daughter Corrine and sister Renee’ Pomeroy Ayers.
He will be sorely missed by his family.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Steve’s honor to NAMI.org.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date for friends and family.
Marjorie (Margie) Shanley Jensen
On July 20, 2021, Margie Jensen peacefully passed away from natural causes. Margie reached her goal of living 90 glorious years on earth. She was ready to join our Heavenly Father and her beloved husband Bob Jensen, who had passed in 2004.
Margie was born June 29, 1931, in Deer Lodge, Montana, to Paul and Eva Shanley. She attended school in Deer Lodge and graduated from Powell County High School. Margie married the love of her life, Bob Jensen, on Valentine’s Day 1951 at the Deer Lodge First Presbyterian Church.
Margie made Deer Lodge her home until October 2017, when she moved to Las Vegas, Nevada, where she lived with her daughter Lynda Jensen and son-in-law Bob Medeiros. In May 2021, Margie moved to Denver, Colorado. She was cared for by her son Mike Jensen (Denver) during the final months of her life. Her grandchildren Brock Jensen, Dane Jensen (Darci Smerchek) and Lisa Davidson; and her great grandchildren Haddie Jensen and Reggie Jensen all live in the Denver area.
Margie was a dedicated, loving wife, mother and daughter, and a loyal friend to many. She was humble, appreciative and kind, and lived her life with grace and good humor. She had a special love for animals.
We all enjoyed Margie’s great sense of humor, contagious laugh and zest for life. She enjoyed playing bridge, painting, reading and simply chatting with friends over coffee. During her years in Deer Lodge, Margie worked at several different places including the telephone company, the post office, Powell County and Crystal’s clothing store. She had a great sense of fashion.
Margie’s ashes will return home and be placed next to her husband’s at the Deer Lodge cemetery at some date in the near future.
Charlotte Fern Reighard
Our beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother passed away July 4, 2021, at Elkhorn Healthcare and Rehabilitation in Clancy, Montana. Fern was born April 24, 1931, in Butte, Montana, the daughter of Alice (John Crary) and Vivian Davis. Her father died in a mining accident when she was just a little girl. She had two sisters, Georgia (Don) Briggeman and JoAnn (Sam) Whitcomb. Fern graduated in 1950 from Powell County High School and worked for Mountain States Telephone and Telegraph until she married Louis “Dale” Reighard on May 26, 1951. She then went to work cooking for the Milwaukee bridge and building crew, traveling throughout Montana wherever Dale was working. When the family started to expand, Fern and Dale made their permanent home in Deer Lodge, with Dale traveling with the railroad, only coming home on the weekends. Fern was a devoted homemaker to seven children and numerous foster children. In her later years, after the kids started school, she went to work at Powell County Memorial Hospital, first in the kitchen then in the laundry, retiring in the late 1980’s.
Preceding her in death were Fern’s parents; her husband and soulmate Dale; two sons, Kim and Tracy; and sisters Georgia and JoAnn and brother-in-law Sam.
Survivors include four sons and one daughter, Mark (Kari) Reighard of Deer Lodge, Amy (George) Irwin of Fernley, Nevada, John (Connie) Reighard of Helena, Chris (Pam) Reighard of Deer Lodge, and Eric (KaRena) Reighard of Helena. Fern had nine grandchildren and fifteen great-grandchildren, with another due any day now. She is also survived by her brother-in-law Don Briggeman and many cherished cousins, nieces, nephews and foster children.
A graveside service will be held on August 7 at 2 p.m. at Hillcrest Cemetery, West Milwaukee Avenue, Deer Lodge. A BBQ will follow at the home of Mark and Kari Reighard, 826 College Ave. in Deer Lodge. Please visit www.aswfuneralhome.com to offer a condolence to the family or to share a memory of Charlotte.
Funeral Notice - Nancy Kenny
A celebration of life for Nancy Kenny will be held at the Racetrack Valley Fire Hall/Community Center on Saturday, July 24, 2021, from 1 to 3 p.m. Food and refreshments will be served.
Nancy J. Kenny, 76, of Deer Lodge, Montana, died on Sunday, December 6, 2020, at the Deer Lodge Medical Center in Deer Lodge.
Longfellow Finnegan Riddle Funeral and Cremation Service is entrusted with Nancy’s funeral arrangements. You may pay your condolences at www.longfellowfinneganriddle.com.
Funeral Notice - Barry Kennedy
Barry Kennedy, age 74, of Deer Lodge, passed away on March 20, 2021. A graveside service with military honors will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, July 21, 2021, at Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge. Please visit www.buttefuneralhome.com to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of Barry. Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services has been privileged to care for Barry and his family.
Paul Joseph Ployhar
Paul Joseph Ployhar, 89, passed away peacefully at his home in Melstone, Montana, on June 30, 2021, following a six-month battle with esophageal cancer.
Paul was born the third of nine children to Joseph E. and Mary J. (Baburek) Ployhar at the family farm in Coffee Creek, MT on April 25, 1932. Paul graduated from St. Leo’s Catholic High School in Lewistown, MT in 1950. After graduation, he relocated with the family to a ranch in Potomac, MT.
In 1952, Paul was drafted into the U.S. Army and served in the 32nd Infantry Regiment in the Korean War. Although Paul was very quiet about his time in active service, we know that he had specialized training in radio communications and completed his duty with honors. Upon returning from Korea, he formed Ployhar Logging with his brother Stephen, who was also a Korean War Veteran. They operated their logging business throughout Montana for the next 42 years.
Paul married the love of his life, Nancy Ellen Gendrow, in Bonner, MT on May 4, 1957. They were blessed with five children whom they raised in Deer Lodge. Work opportunities led Paul to Eastern Montana in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. After Nancy’s untimely death in 1994, he relocated to Melstone full time.
Paul had a strong faith and was very active in the local Catholic parish. A gifted musician, Paul enjoyed playing the guitar and mandolin at jam sessions and family gatherings, instilling in his children an appreciation of music. In retirement, Paul enjoyed fishing, wood cutting and gardening; he could often be found tending the community garden or delivering firewood to friends and neighbors.
Always a hard worker, and especially mechanically inclined, he was known as the town Fix-It Man (or Melstone MacGyver!). Paul continued to cut firewood, operate his chain saws and help others until just before his death. Paul remained quick-witted, sharp as a tack and tough as nails to the very end.
Paul was preceded in death by his beloved wife Nancy; his parents Joseph and Mary Ployhar; and siblings Charlie, Martin, Stephen, Rosalie Froehlich, Annie O’Neill and Mary Anne Abbot.
Paul is survived by two siblings, Albert (Peggy) Ployhar of Spokane Valley, WA, and Josephine Labbe of Turah, MT; children Marie Ployhar of Deer Lodge, Madonna (Kirk) Mader of Orovada, NV, Loretta (Ron) Sweigard of Cle Elum, WA, Annette (Sean) Galahan of Deer Lodge, and Anthony (Shelley) Ployhar of Delaware, OH; grandchildren Jessica Scharf, Austin (Kelly) Scharf, Quinn (Chase) Briggs, Kade Mader, Danielle Sweigard, Sami Sweigard, Joey Meagher, Connor Meagher, Julian Ployhar, Tristan Ployhar and Farryn Ployhar; and nine great grandchildren.
Paul’s Funeral Mass will be held at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church in Melstone, MT, on July 21, 2021, at 11:30 a.m. (Rosary will be at 11:00 am), followed by a luncheon at the Melstone Community Center.
Paul’s graveside service will be held at Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge, MT, on Saturday, July 24, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. followed by a luncheon at The Broken Arrow.
Memorials can be made to the Melstone EMT/fire service, Melstone Community Pool or Melstone Community Center.
Eva Marie Pierce
Deer Lodge resident Eva Marie Pierce passed away Saturday, July 10, at her residence surrounded by loving family. She was 49.
Eva was born to Ernest and Evelyn Pierce on July 17, 1971, and was welcomed into a large family of siblings. Throughout her life she maintained a strength of spirit that dominated her attitude and kept her in control of her adventures. Not always being dealt the best of hands, she maximized her place at the table with sheer strength and determination that was admired by anyone who knew her.
Eva loved to draw, fish and collect rocks. She could always be seen scrubbing her rocks clean, with a pencil in her hand drawing something or immortalizing her drawings by etching them onto wood.
Eva had two sons, Christopher Pierce and Cody Grantham. She also had a daughter, Jessica Pierce, who preceded her in death. Eva was also preceded in death by brothers Ernest Jr., Blaine, Evan and Cliff.
Eva is survived by her sisters Elizabeth Stone, Tina Pierce, Irma Morrel, Delia Pierce and Rosa Pierce; brothers Joseph, Karl and Pat; along with several nieces and nephews, cousins and her granddaughter Abigail Rose Grantham. A celebration of life will be announced at a later date.
Axelson Funeral and Cremation Service has been privileged to care for Eva and her family.
Funeral Notice: Barry Kennedy
Barry Kennedy, age 74, of Deer Lodge, passed away on March 20, 2021. A graveside service with military honors will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, July 21, 2021, at Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge. Please visit www.buttefuneralhome.com to offer the family a condolence, or to share a memory of Barry. Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services has been privileged to care for Barry and his family.
Charles “Chuck” Bernard Campbell
One of Montana’s best, Chuck Campbell passed away at home in Polson on June 17, 2021, succumbing to ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. He was a wonderful human who left us too soon.
Chuck was born on New Year’s Eve 1967 in Post, Texas, the third son of Bud and Barbara Campbell. His family moved to Deer Lodge, Montana, in 1971, where he grew up alongside his brothers, John and Steve. He played football and basketball for the Wardens.
Chuck went to the University of Montana, where he made lifelong friendships through the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity and served on the UM Grizzly Cheer Squad. Growing up in a house of public servants, he earned a B.A. in Political Science and spent several years working for U.S. representatives, including Montana Senator Conrad Burns. He was a stalwart Republican and excelled at bringing people together to build community and solve problems.
Chuck had a long career in sales and marketing, working in technology, communications and special projects. He lived in Seattle, Las Vegas and Williston, but the mountains and lakes of Western Montana drew him back home time and time again.
He married Brandy Bravard in 2001, and they had two sons, Cole (2002) and Chase (2006). Chuck loved his sons more than life and enjoyed every moment he had with them. Later in life he discovered he also had a daughter, Joelle Brown, whom he reconnected with in 2016.
At a college reunion in 2010 Chuck reconnected with Pam Aker, and they were married on Valentine’s Day in 2015. Chuck loved living on Skidoo Lane with Pam and her family. He was a member of the Finley Point Fire Department, where he served as president of the board and was named the 2018 Fireman of the Year.
Chuck was a vibrant, intelligent, funny and courageous man, who battled a crippling disease with strength and grace. He leaves behind his wife Pam, sons, and brothers, as well as many aunts, uncles, cousins, and countless friends. He will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him.
A celebration of life will take place at Flathead Lake later this summer. Cards and memories can be sent to his family at 32413 Skidoo Lane, Polson, MT 59860.
There will also be a celebration of life/graveside vigil that will take place in Deer Lodge on Saturday 8/21. Time and place are still to be determined. For more information, please contact Steve at 406.491.3908.
Betty Lou (Glassey) Thompson
Betty Lou Thompson passed away from natural causes on Tuesday, June 29, 2021, in Deer Lodge, Montana. Cremation has taken place. Betty Lou Glassey was born in Darby, Montana, on October 26, 1928, to Edward and Phyllis (Powe) Glassey. Her sister Wanda was born the next October.
The family moved to Wisdom, Montana, where Betty Lou attended grade school for seven years. She graduated from Beaverhead County High School in 1946. She met Oliver (Smokey) Thompson in high school in 1945 at a roller-skating rink in Dillon and they were married on May 8, 1948, in Wisdom. Two daughters, Diane Kay and Linda Lee, were born in Dillon.
Betty Lou worked at the Dillon Tribune newspaper and for two years in the Clerk and Recorder’s Office at the Beaverhead County Courthouse during their early years in Dillon. When Smokey was hired by the Montana Power Company, the family transferred to Butte in 1953, and moved to Deer Lodge in October 1959; Betty Lou has resided there since.
In Deer Lodge, Betty Lou worked as Deputy County Assessor in the Assessor’s Office at the Powell County Courthouse and retired on January 1, 1988. She bowled on the Ken-Mar Lanes team for many years with wonderful friends. Betty Lou was active in the First Presbyterian Church and enjoyed playing cards, especially bridge and pinochle. She and Smokey took several tours around the United States, one trip to Ireland, plus several cruises.
Betty Lou was a dedicated wife — taking care of Smokey for at least 11 years after he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s — as well as a mother, grandmother and friend. She would take Thanksgiving dinner to several friends and when asked why, she said she hoped someone would help her when she needed it. Her sense of humor was infectious and her laugh was so joyful. Her legion of friends was a testament to how well she was liked and loved.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Smokey; her mother and father; her sister; mother- and father-in-law Alma and Edmund Thompson; several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.
Survivors include daughters Diane of Missoula, and Linda Lee (George) Hucke of Fallon, NV; grandson Wade (Cathy) Hucke of Dillon; granddaughter Wende Hook (Ozzie Henke) of Fallon, NV; great-grandsons Derrick Hucke of Havre and Donovan Hucke of Miles City; great-granddaughters Ali Pokrandt of Alabama, and Camryn Hook of Fallon, NV, and brother in-law Bill Brown of Hamilton.
A memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church in Deer Lodge on Tuesday, July 6, 2021, at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, please donate in Betty Lou’s name to the First Presbyterian Church, 500 Milwaukee Avenue, Deer Lodge, MT 59722; the Deer Lodge Elks Club, PO Box 777, Deer Lodge, MT 59722; or Friends of Hospice, 1940 Dewey Blvd., Butte, MT 59701.
The family gives a very special thank you for the love, care and excellent help that was given by the staff of the Renaissance Senior Care. The Renaissance was her home where she thrived these last four years. Thanks also goes to the Deer Lodge Medical Center Hospital for the health care and kindness she was given during her two-month COVID-19 recovery.
Sheila Keirnes - March 11, 1947 - May 5, 2021
Sheila Keirnes was born to Guy & Helen (Wood) Keirnes in Missoula, MT, on March 11, 1947. Sheila was warmly welcomed by two big brothers, Bill & Gary and numerous cousins. Sheila was a beautiful, bright light addition to the family. Sheila lived with her family in Hall, MT. Helen loved to dress Sheila up in frilly dresses and entered her in many beautiful baby contests and later in pageants. Sheila won first place in two of the beauty pageants. She attended grade school in Hall. Sheila was a very headstrong, stubborn, outdoorsy girl and spent her childhood sledding, swimming, boating, bicycling, roller-skating, ice skating, horseback riding and dancing with her brothers and the Hunt and Olsson children in Hall. Later, Sheila and her family moved to Richland, WA where she attended high school.
Sheila met Homer Blackburn in Richland. Homer and Sheila got married and moved back to Granite County, where they resided at the Stone house. From this marriage, Sheila was blessed with three boys: Wayne, Daren and Shawn.
In the early 1970s, Sheila and Helen went in as partners and bought the Turf Bar in Drummond. After the Turf closed in 1986, Sheila worked various jobs including bartending, cooking & waiting tables in a local restaurant. In the late 1990s Sheila went to work for Helen at Stockman’s Bar in Hall after her mom broke her hip. Sheila eventually took over the bar due to her mother’s declining health issues. Sheila loved Stockman’s. She loved to visit with her customers, getting to know all the new ones, each of them by name. She loved watching the school children play outside at recess from the bar window.
She loved to visit with the school children when they came over for a Roy Rogers or Shirley Temple. They gave her such delight. Sheila supported all the many activities the Hall school children participated in. Sheila also liked to watch the dog agility competitions at the Hall school. Sheila was an avid horsewoman. She spent many years riding out for several local ranchers helping gather and move cows with her horses. Sheila loved to read and kept up on all the news.
Sheila had a passion for all animals. Throughout her life, she had lots of pets including a unique monkey named Margie, a donkey named Elwood (that ended up in a delightful article in the Missoulian newspaper), several horses, several precious dogs - including her most recent dog, her beloved Gypsy - along with many cats as her furry friends. Any stray animal always found a place in her heart and home.
Sheila had lots of friends and strategically placed a few good friends in her life. Since she has passed, we have found each one of us had a specific purpose that she leaned on us for. Her family had the assurance she was being looked after by good friends.
Although she was extremely private about her personal life, Sheila was a cancer survivor. She encountered many injustices through her life’s path, but with a forgiving heart, she and her spirit persevered. Sheila dared to be her own person and make a difference in the world. Sheila was a compassionate, kind and loving soul. Her grandson Ben stated that there were not enough words to honestly describe her. She would do anything she could for anyone, unless you got on her bad side! And if you did, she would let you know how she felt. At times, Sheila could be a bit of a rebel!! We were blessed to have had her in our lives.
Sheila is proceeded in death by her parents, ns Wayne Blackburn, Daren Blackburn, Shawn Blackburn and brother Bill Powell.
Sheila is survived by her brother Gary (Sandy) Powell, niece Sarah Powell, daughter-in-law Martha Blackburn, grandsons Inez (Amber) Blackburn, Shawn (Adriana) Blackburn, grandson Benjamin (Leah) Schechtman, granddaughter Brandi (Stephan) Seamons, great-grandchildren Jon, Alina, Caden, Nevaeh, Forrest, Sadi, and Mattis, dear cousin Sandy Opp and her many close friends. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday July 3, 2021, at Stockman’s Bar in Hall at 5pm, potluck dinner.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to Bitterroot Humane Association, 262 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton, MT 59840 or to an animal rescue of your choice.
Summer Johnson - September17, 1999 - October 1, 2020
Summer was born in Belcourt, ND and was a proud member of Turtle Mountain Tribe.
After struggling with the death of her sister, Summer passed away in the early hours of October on the anniversary of her sister’s death.
Summer loved music and playing guitar. She loved animals, and helping people when she could.
She is survived by her mother Wanda VanGilder.
Jack Anthony Hurst, M.D.
Jack Anthony Hurst, M.D. passed away on Sunday, June 13, 2021 surrounded by family at home in Folsom, LA. He was born on April 14, 1946 in Lafayette, Louisiana to Bernice Dupuis and Carl Hurst, who both preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by his brothers, John Hurst and Jerry Hurst. He is survived by one sister, Karlene Hurst Nolan.
Jack was the loving father of two daughters who adored him, Hilary Hurst Landry (Mickey) and Calais Hurst Waring (Patrick). Jack was the proud grandfather of four grandchildren, Sophia Landry, Miriam “Mae Mae” Landry, Patrick Landry, and Gabriel Coulon.
Following his graduation from Lafayette High School, Jack attended ULL, formerly known as the University of Southwestern Louisiana, where he graduated with a degree in English Literature and Chemical engineering. He later obtained a master’s degree in English literature. After working abroad for several years, he married and moved to Beirut, Lebanon to continue his education. He obtained a doctorate of neuroanatomy from the American University in Beirut, before being evacuated in 1976 by the United States Navy along with other Americans, because of the ongoing civil war. He returned to New Orleans and began medical school at Louisiana State University. Following graduation he pursued a residency in neurosurgery, serving as Chief Resident of the program at Charity Hospital. He went on to practice briefly in Fayetteville, Arkansas, returning to Lafayette, Louisiana to practice in 1987. Recently, Jack moved to Deer Lodge, Montana where he continued practicing medicine until the day he was admitted to the hospital.
A Memorial Service will be held privately by the family at a later date. In lieu of gifts or flowers, the family asks that donations be made in the name of Jack A. Hurst, M.D. to the LSU Foundation with a designation that the gift is for the James L. Dennis Law Clinic at the LSU Law Center. Please Share a Memory on the Tribute Wall at www.ejfieldingfh.com.
Conrad Charles Martinz Jr.
Conrad Charles Martinz Jr. - died April 26, 2021 peacefully at his home in Wenatchee, Wa. Conrad was born December 11, 1931 in Garrison, MT and is survived by his daughter Tammy Curtis (Martinz), Tonga range, 10 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his sister Mary Jean price and son Kenny Martinz, great grandson Jax.
Death Notice: Cleo Neckels Strickland
Cleo Neckels Strickland passed into eternity on July 7, 2020. Because of the pandemic we were unable to honor her memory at that time. All family and friends are invited to join us for a Celebration of Life in Cleo’s honor on June 26, 2021 at 2pm at the Elks Lodge on Main Street in Deer Lodge.
David Harrington, local musician, died at home May 13, 2021. Dave was born August 19, 1951, at Hamilton Air Force Base in California to Van and Jean (Greenwalt) Harrington. The family returned to Deer Lodge in 1952 where Dave attended local schools. He graduated from Powell County High School where he developed a passion for theatre and for music that he kept all his life. He attended Montana Tech for a time, then abandoned school for a varied career which included snake wrangler for the Portland Zoo and gandydancer for the Milwaukee Railroad. He loved outdoor pursuits - skiing, hang gliding, hiking, and mountain climbing. He climbed Grand Teton and other peaks in the Rocky Mountains and in New Zealand. But his main focus was music. He could play any instrument; he built and sold dulcimers, lutes, and Irish harps, and was known for impromptu concerts at the library, bookstore, or any sunny patch of grass.
Dave was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Lois Bergeson.
He is survived by his sister, Sue Harrington, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Private family services will be held. Memorials may be made to Grant-Kohrs Library, PAWHS of Deer Lodge, or Montana Mental Health of Butte. Please visit www.buttefuneralhome.com to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of David. Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services has been privileged to care for David and his family.
Conrad Charles Martinz Jr.
Conrad Charles Martinz Jr. - died April 26, 2021 peacefully at his home in Palisades, Wa. Conrad was born December 11, 1931 in Garrison, MT and is survived by his daughter Tammy Curtis (Martinz), Tonga range, 10 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his sister Mary Jean price and son Kenny Martinz, great-grandson Jax.
Funeral Notice - Alan Arthur
Please join us for a Memorial Service to celebrate the life of our Dad, Alan Arthur, on June 8th at 2 p.m. at the Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge. Following the Memorial Service, there will be a reception at the Elks Lodge on main street in Deer Lodge beginning at 2:15.
Beverly (Campbell/Fox) Smith
It is with great sadness that the family of Beverly (Campbell/Fox) Smith announces her passing on May 14, 2021 at the age of 71. Bev had persevered through numerous heart-related surgeries, all the while never losing her positive spirit and desire to love and appreciate those around her and we were all fortunate to have her as long as we did.
Bev lived in Twin Falls, Idaho for nearly 30 years and worked many of those years at the Twin Falls County Sheriff’s Department, while raising her two daughters, Stephanie and Melanie. She met and married Brent Smith in 1995 and they moved to Deer Lodge, Montana in 2006 to be closer to Brent’s daughter, Leslie, and her family. Bev worked at the Powell County Courthouse, sharing her knowledge and spirit until her retirement in early 2015. All the while, she and Brent enjoyed raising sheep and all the excitement that goes along with livestock (like taking bummer lambs to the office because they have to be bottle fed on a schedule)! Bev loved to grow a garden, puzzles and traveling to see her family. She also enjoyed spending time in her kitchen, creating delicious meals for her family (made with love) and friends that stopped by.
Bev was an amazing wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and friend and will be lovingly remembered by her family and friends.
She is survived by her husband, Brent Smith, daughters Melanie (Ben Moritz) Fox, Stephanie Fox, Leslie (Alan) Boomer, granddaughters Téa Moritz and Ashley (Willow) Wehr and grandson Alex Boomer and great granddaughter Jordan Wehr.
At this time, no funeral service is scheduled. Cards may be sent to Brent Smith c/o Ashley Wehr, 47 Tristan River Lane, Deer Lodge, Montana, 59722. In lieu of flowers, please feel free to donate to Powell County Medical Foundation, In Loving Memory of Bev Smith, 1100 Hollenback Lane, Deer Lodge, Montana, 59722.
Allen D. Vaira -- 1941-2019
Allen D. Vaira passed away on July 2, 2019 in Deer Lodge, Montana.
Allen was born in Richland County, Montana in 1941.
He was a marine, a magistrate in Tok, Alaska, a park ranger at Grant Kohrs Ranch in Deer Lodge, Montana and he was a Christian.
Allen was the oldest son of Adolphus and Lilly Vaira, brother to Darlene Wells, Dianne
Thompson, Donna (Rich) Arca, and Arlen (Karen) Vaira. Allen is buried in the Veteran Cemetery.
Correction: William Arthur Rush
In the May 19 issue of the Silver State Post, the obit for William Arthur Rush listed his lifespan as “June 9, 1930 - April 30, 1921.”
The correct dates were June 9, 1930 to April 30, 2021.
Death Notice - Beverly Smith
Beverly Smith age 71, born May 2, 1950 passed away May 14, 2021. Full obituary to follow.
Lucille Lorang Helsper
November 14, 1929 – February 19, 2021
Lucille Helsper, 91, was born in Great Falls to Charles and Catherine (Thommes) Lorang on Nov. 14, 1929. She died peacefully Feb. 19 in Butte.
She is survived by sisters Anna Lingel and Mary Seidl, and her six children, John H. Helsper (Denize Springer) of Mill Valley, Calif., William F. Helsper of Deer Lodge, Lynne M. Gallion (Ron) of Centennial, Colo., Michael D. Helsper (Annette) of Tustin, Calif., Cheryl A. Gebhardt (Matt) of Kalispell, and Curtis L. Helsper (Sue) of Coeur d Alene, Idaho.
Also surviving her are grandchildren, Brian Helsper of Tustin, Calif., Kevin Helsper (Allison) of Anaheim Hills, Calif., Ronnie Gallion (Gara Frisch) of Aurora, Colo., Tom Gebhardt (Heather) of Wasilla, Ark., Ryan Gebhardt of Kalispell, Brenna Russell (Paul) of Nelson Bay, Australia, Scott Helsper of San Bernardino, Calif., Drew Helsper of Coeur d Alene, Idaho, and Dennis Wind of Butte.
Her great grandchildren are Blake, Luke and Zackary Helsper of Anaheim Hills, Calif., Lily and Titus Gebhardt of Richland’s, N.C., Seb and Charlie Russell of Nelson Bay, Australia, and Sterling and Brody Gallion of Aurora, Colo.
Lucille was predeceased by her husband, John V. Helsper; sisters Katie Hugg, Sylvia Mammen and Helen Rada; and daughter-in-law Lisa Helsper.
After graduating from Great Falls High School, Lucille worked as a stenographer until she married. The couple raised their children in Great Falls, Sun River and Anaconda, where, later in life, she worked at Christie’s Flower Shop for 20 + years. She also lived briefly in Kellogg, Idaho and Yuma, Ariz., returning to Anaconda before moving to Butte.
An energetic follower of her children’s and grandchildren’s sports pursuits, “Gramma Lucy” often traveled hundreds of miles to cheer them on at games and meets. They all looked up to her as a bold, strong, driven, funny and sometimes a larger-than-life figure and hero.
When she wasn’t traveling, Lucille was busy going to and volunteering to manage rummage sales and other community events as well as advancing her skills in a number of crafts, including ceramics, crochet and fashioning beautifully accurate silk renderings of many species of flowers, often contributing them to the weddings and other celebrations of friends and families.
Lucy will be remembered for her generous spirit, as a friend to all her children’s friends and as someone who could empathize with and strike up a conversation with anyone.
She loved Elvis Presley, NASCAR and spending time at her family’s cabin on Flathead Lake, where picking and eating cherries were one her favorite things about summer.
She marveled at nature and tried to share it with her children and grandchildren, particularly the wonder of butterflies, hummingbirds, roadrunners and the chickens that lived in the trees outside her Yuma home.
Late in life she relished the role as her own family’s matriarch at the gatherings at her son Bill’s ranch where she kept time on expertly played spoons with all the musicians in the family. She also held her own at horseshoes and even took up the challenge of her son’s home-built mechanical bull. “Oh, what a thrill!,” she proclaimed as she walked away victorious.
Lucille was an avid member of the Daughters of Isabella and the congregation at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Anaconda. A Funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 28, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 605 Clark St., Deer Lodge, MT 59722. Rite of Committal will follow at Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge. Condolences and memories can be shared online at https://buttefuneralhome.com/obituaries/lucille-helsper-age-91-of-deer-lodge/#respond
Gifts in Lucille’s honor can be made to: Daughters of Isabella, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital or to a favorite charity.
Please visit www.buttefuneralhome.com to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of Lucy.
Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services has been privileged to care for Lucy and her family.
Lucille “Lucy” Helsper
Lucille “Lucy” Helsper, 91, of Butte, formerly of Deer Lodge and Anaconda, died Feb. 19. A Funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 28, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 605 Clark St., Deer Lodge.
Rite of Committal will follow at Hillcrest Cemetery in Deer Lodge. Please visit www.buttefuneralhome.com to offer the family a condolence or to share a memory of Lucy.
Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services has been privileged to care for Lucy and her family.
William Arthur Rush
June 9, 1930 – April 30, 1921
In memory of my brother Bill Rush:
William Arthur Rush, 90, of Deer Lodge, died Friday, April 30, in Helena, Montana.
My nephew, Don Rush, asked me to write about my brother Bill for this paper. I do this with pride. He was a brother to be proud of.
Bill was the first born in our family, weighing only 1 ½ pounds. Mother shared how hard it was to care for this tiny baby. She and Dad cared for him with tender loving care. Bill grew up to be 6 foot and 225 pounds.
At age 11, Bill got sick with spinal meningitis. This terrible disease took a toll on him. When it was over, he could not walk. Also, he forgot how to read. My parents bought a bicycle - Dad set him on it. They would go up and down the road until he got his legs working again. Bill was always handicapped with his reading skill, but his common sense was great. He knew how to treat people – fair with lots of kindness.
He left home at 17 and got the job as head crane man for the Anaconda Company After six or seven years, he had to quit – the gases in the air was poisonous. He went to work as a sheepherder in the clean outdoors and got his health back.
At age 35, his folks had a house fire. Bill went in to recover their important papers. He collapsed in the fire. His dad tore out a hole in the side of the wall and got Bill out. He was burned over 75% of his body, although his face was not burned.
He built his first house in Deer Lodge, and married Doris Sheelow. They had four children: sons, Bill and Don; and daughters, Dollie and a little girl, Bernadette, who one terrible night lost her life in a fire. Also their home.
Bill worked night shift at the Cominco Mine, just outside of Deer Lodge. He worked there 30 years, never missing a shift. In winter he bought warm coats for the miners – he was always thinking of others.
My brother came through so many hard times and always rose up a better man.
He started a used car lot in Deer Lodge – fixed them up and sold them. People paid him little payments. He just knew some folks had it harder than others. Lots of young people got their first car from my brother Bill.
At times he paid taxes for people. Also, food and rent for others down on their luck.
I was his little sister. He made me feel special all through my life. I’m 80 years, now.
In later years, Bill married Winnifred Dulaney. They had a good life together. He loved her very much.
Bill died April 30 of a heart condition. He died peacefully. I know our lord was with him and took him to heaven. Bill believed in Jesus Christ of the Holy Bible.
Bill had a saying when things got rough. He’d say, “What the hell.” He never lingered on the problems; just went on living, helping others.
Bill is survived by his wife, Winnifred; sons, Don and Bill; daughter, Dollie Rush Heitz; brother, George; sisters, Lily Kostoff and Tressie Fike; lots of grandchildren.
Bill Rush will be missed very much. He was a very good man. – written by his sister, Tressie Rush Fike.
To submit an obituary, please email email@example.com or call us at 406-846-2424.