Dale O. Mattila
Dale O. Mattila’s courageous battle with cancer ended on Sept. 19, 2015. The cancer didn’t beat him, it just outlasted him. Dale leaves behind a grieving family and many friends who will miss his infectious smile, resounding laugh, and gentle soul. His was a life well-lived.
Dale was born in Red Lodge on March 21, 1940 to Arvo and Bessie. Brother Donald, and sister Donna, would come later. He graduated from Red Lodge High School in 1958.
In May of 1960, he married Toni Radosevich. They would have four kids; Dale, Tana, Bambi, and Penni.
After stints in construction and mining, Dale would eventually bring the family to Deer Lodge where he had a long career with the Milwaukee Road Railroad. The young family also lived in Avery, Idaho and Lewistown for a time. After the railroad pulled out of Deer Lodge, Dale ended up moving to Billings where he was the maintenance man for an apartment complex for a number of years. Being a maintenance man was a natural fit; he was a jack of all trades and a master of many. If he couldn’t fix it, you might as well throw it away.
Dale was a simple man with simple joys and prides.
An avid outdoorsman, he loved fishing, hunting, floating, you name it. One of his absolute favorite things was the annual family huckleberry picking trip back to the Avery area every Labor Day weekend. His huckleberry scouting skills were legendary, regularly finding the mother lode when no one else could. He was also known to spend nearly the entire hunting season at the little hunting cabin on the Bignell ranch outside of Avon, only coming in to take the occasional belated shower. He was never happier than having a camp or cabin full of hungry people and putting out a feast for them. He was always the head camp cook and the coffee pot was always perking. Dale never met a mountain, lake, or river he didn’t like. He was still backpacking into the lakes of the Beartooths into his 60s. He was also up for a float down the Clark Fork or Big Hole anytime the chance came up.
Dale also loved the Denver Broncos, a cold beer, a good steak, and a friendly game of cribbage (especially when he beat Larry). He joined the Deer Lodge cribbage club in recent years and had a great time and made many new friends.
Dale took great pride in his Ford trucks, his camper, and his little blue house on College Street with the meticulous yard and the always-enviable tomato crop. He was the guy who would have his walks shoveled before the rest of the block was out of bed. His greatest pride though was in his family. He was immensely proud of all his children, and a tireless fan of his eight grandkids – Dale, Carter, Kolby, Sierra, Savanna, Abby, Kelsie, and Rilee - spending untold hours on the road and in hard bleacher seats around the state supporting them. They will miss him greatly.
Dale is survived by his children; Dale of Livingston, Tana (John) Bignell of Avon, Bambi of Deer Lodge, and Penni (Joe) Gray of Deer Lodge, as well as the eight grandkids.
Memorial services were on Thursday, Sept. 24 at 11 at the Immaculate Conception Church in Deer Lodge. A luncheon followed.
Robert Lee Hutchison
Robert Lee Hutchison passed away Friday, September 18, 2015 at the Deer Lodge Medical Center. Bob was born in Plains on May 12, 1945. Bob graduated from Plains High School in 1963 and very much enjoyed his 50th year class reunion. Bob married Irene in 1978, she passed away in 1998. Bob married Julia Gangl Christensen on October 25, 2003 in Deer Lodge.
Bob was a farmer, truck driver, and worked for the Burlington Northern Railroad until his injury forced him to retire from an industry he loved. Bob loved and was a collector of memorabilia of railroads and old tractors. He was a member of the Deer Lodge Tractor Club.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents William and Mamie Hutchison, older brother Roy, wife Irene and Julia’s son, John Wheat. Bob is survived by his wife Julia Gangl Hutchison, her children and grandchildren, his step-daughter Kelly and step-son Kirk, sisters Betty Clevidence of Stevensville, Lola Sipes and many nieces and nephews.
Services will be held on Saturday, September 26 at 1 at the Jehovah’s Witness Church, 301 Prairie Lane, Deer Lodge with Elder Del Williams officiating. A luncheon will follow at the Community Center. Burial of Bob’s ashes at Plains Cemetery will follow in the spring.
Death Notice: Ray G. Masters
Ray G. Masters, 86, formerly of Deer Lodge, passed away at his home in Oceanside, California on September 16. A full obituary will follow at a later date.
William C. Giannonatti
William C. Giannonatti passed away on the 31st day of August at St. James Hospital in Butte.
Bill was born to Carlos and Rosella Giannonatti on April 28, 1930 at the family ranch in Buffalo, S.D., and attended country grade school. The family moved to Portland, Ore. during the war and Bill graduated from which school in Portland. Upon the death of his mother, he returned to South Dakota and began his career with the Milwaukee Railroad.
In 1957, Bill married Beverly Giannonatti, ending in 1999. They had two sons, Gregory and Darrell. Bill was preceded in death by Darrell, and Greg is presently living in Deer Lodge.
Bill was Supervisor of Signals and Communications for the Milwaukee Railroad, and was so sad at its demise. He then moved to Billings, as a supervisor of the National Railroad Administration. After retiring from the NRA, he moved to his country home in Deer Lodge.
At Bill’s request, there will be no funeral.
Thanks to all who visited him in the hospital and to the wonderful caregivers at the hospital.
Lois Rae Nix-Smith
Nov. 2, 1939 to Sept. 11, 2015.
Lois Rae Nix was born Nov. 2, 1939 in Dillon to Muriel Leora Edwards and D.G. Nix. She was raised in Lima until her junior year of high school when the family moved to Dillon. She graduated From Beaverhead County High School in 1958 and then married Van Thomas Smith in July 1958. Together they had three children Glen, Sheri, and Mark. They were divorced in Dec., 1960.
She was baptized in the First Presbyterian Church in Dillon in March of 1964. She remained a member of the church for the rest of her life.
She had many fond memories of visiting the Centennial Valley when they would go spend the summer with grandparents, aunts and uncles. She loved the old cemeteries and decorating all the gravesites of her ancestors. She enjoyed seeing all the old homesteads and talking about all the people she remembered from her childhood. She continued to visit the valley every summer even as an adult.
She was employed at the Big Dipper Café and later at the Oasis Café. She then went to work at Parkview Acres Nursing Home where she remained employed for 30 years. She retired in 2004. She then worked part-time at the Beaverhead County Welfare Department and the City Library. She quit working completely in 2007.
She loved cows and collected everything with a cow on it. Every room was decorated with cows. She had knickknacks, jewelry, stuffed animals, pillows and tee-shirts, towels, and pictures on every wall of cows.
She enjoyed family gatherings. She loved her friends at the church and all her friends at the Bicentennial Apartments. She adored her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren. She will be sorely missed by them all.
She is survived by her children; Glen (Lisa) Smith of Deer Lodge, Sheri (Allen) Nygren of Argenta and Mark (Sarah) Smith of Calhoun, Mo., her sister; Leora Grace Peterson of Sheridan and a brother; Gyle (Carellen) Nix of Boulder, three grandsons; Gyle, Gary and Jeremiah (Nicole) Nygren of Dillon and one granddaughter; Rachel (Jason) Finch of Commerce, Ga., six great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews and cousins.
The family has planned a memorial service for next spring where we will scatter her ashes on Spring Hill in Lima as she wished. We would like to invite everyone to celebrate the life of our mother, sister, grandmother at the First Presbyterian Church for a luncheon on September 19 at 1 p.m. Memorials can be made to the church or the Centennial Valley Cemetery Restoration Fund. There is a guestbook available on line at www.brundagefuneralhome.com.
Eric Francis Weller
Eric Francis Weller was born March 17, 1959 in New Haven, Conn. and passed on August 15, 2015 in Edmonds, Wash.
Eric was a talented artist who attended Rhode Island School of Design and the University of Connecticut. He was in ROTC and following college he entered the Air Force and was stationed at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls as a Missile Officer.
Eric had a passion and enthusiasm for living life to its fullest. Life to him was an incredible journey. He had a deep respect for nature and loved being in the outdoors. He loved to spend time and work on his cattle ranch in Gold Creek. His dream was to retire there. He had a great sense of humor and treasured the love he shared with his family, friends and his animals.
He was a respected and dedicated professional working in the roofing and the construction industry for over 20 years where his efforts made a lasting impact.
Always the “Warhorse” he showed tremendous strength, determination and courage during the last year of his life while he battled cancer. He is survived by his wife Paula, mother Jessie Weller, father Carl Weller Jr., brother Karl Weller and sister Karla Flaherty and numerous nieces and nephews. A celebration of his life will be held on October 3, 2015 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at his home in Gold Creek. Family and friends are welcome to attend.
Philip Laurence Williams
Philip Laurence Williams, April 19, 1927 – May 11, 2015. Resident of Palo Alto (husband of Jean Ellsworth Williams, formerly of Deer Lodge).
Philip Laurence Williams passed away in his home at the age of 88 early Monday morning, May 11, after a brief illness. He was born in Palo Alto and spent most of his youth in Oakland and Berkeley. After finishing up his high school at Menlo College, he attended Stanford University and graduated in 1949 with a BS in Industrial Engineering. While at Stanford he became a member of their Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity chapter. He received his MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1951. In 1950 he met the love of his life, Anna Jean Ellsworth of Deer Lodge, while they were both working at a soda fountain in Yellowstone Park. After knowing each other only 12 days, they became engaged and were married three months later on Sept. 2. Phil began his career as General Manager at a company formed by his father, Philip Samuel Williams, and Dr. Oliver Johnson in 1928. The company, Johnson-Williams Instruments, was based in Palo Alto, manufactured gas detectors (the “J-W Sniffer” was trademarked) and has since been recognized as the first electronics company in Silicon Valley. Following his tenure with Johnson-Williams, Phil decided to pursue teaching and received his credential from San Jose State in 1967. He taught accounting for 26 years up at City College of San Francisco before retiring in 1994. Phil had a love of jazz that started in his youth, enjoyed playing the piano, and was an avid Stanford football fan. He loved to travel up to Yosemite with his wife Jean, as well as to Disneyland with his grandchildren. He is survived by his wife of almost 65 years, Jean, his brother Robert W. Williams (Erika) of Seattle, as well as his children, Don Williams (Suzanne) of Milpitas, Anne Santiago of Alameda, Gregg Williams (Barbara) of Sunnyvale and grandchildren, Kristina Reynolds (Soren) of Alameda, Katherine and Danielle Williams of Milpitas, Robert Kim (Melanie) of San Jose and great grandchildren, Liliana Gonzalez and Jackson Reynolds, of Alameda.
Private interment took place on Friday, June 12, at Alta Mesa Cemetery in Palo Alto with family present.
A Celebration of Life Mass was held Saturday, June 27, at 11 a.m. at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church, 3233 Cowper Street, Palo Alto.
Death Notice: William C. Giannonatti
William C. Giannonatti passed away on the 31st day of August at St. James Hospital in Butte. At Bill’s request, there will be no funeral. A full obituary will run at a later date.
John P. Hamilton
John P. Hamilton, age 43, died of health complications on August 22, 2015 at Yakima Regional Hospital in Yakima, Wash. He was born on May 8, 1972 in Deer Lodge. His relatives are Rene Hamilton Bain (mother), Ed Hamilton (brother), Pam Hamilton (sister), and Amanda Hamilton (sister). Please contact the Brookside Funeral Home and Crematory at 509-457-1232 if you have any information about John Phillip Hamilton.
Winifred Lea Waldron
Winnie, (Don’t call her Winifred!), was born July 14, 1936 to Troy and Mary Cowen in Fort Morgan, Colo., where she was raised with her eight siblings. Death occurred on 8-26-2015 after a two year battle with lung cancer.
She married Cletus Hill in 1956 and had one daughter (Keri) and three sons (Kyle, Kent, Kevin).
Winnie married the absolute love of her life, Charles Waldron, in 1976 and had 33 happy years together until his death in 2009.
She is survived by her four children, four granddaughters (Amber, Sami, Katie, Mandi) one great-grandson (Evan), and one fish (Oscar).
Graveside services will be held at a later date. Memorials: PAWHS.
Death Notice: Solomon K. Meyer
Solomon K. Meyer, 100, died at his home in Helmville 8-27-15. Mass of Christian burial will be Wednesday, at 11 a.m. at the Catholic Church in Helmville. Burial, with military honors, will follow at the Helmville Cemetery. A full obituary will follow.