Laura Smith died peacefully and went to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on May 28, 2016 in Helena at the age of 58.
Laura was born on March 16, 1958 in Anaconda where she later attended school. She married and later divorced Daniel Marry. Years later, she married Bill (Bonsie) Smith and together they raised their family while living in Opportunity. After Bill’s death in 2009, she moved to Deer Lodge to be closer to her daughter and grandchildren.
Laura had many different jobs during her lifetime. She worked 16 years at MSH, and later for Easter Seals, the Montana Standard, BSW, Western Big Sky Inn, Renaissance Senior Care, and Home Health. She enjoyed helping and caring for people. Throughout their marriage, Laura & Bill owned and operated S & S Salvage along with Bill’s brother Ron. After Bill’s death Laura continued on as partner until 2012.
Laura was a devoted Christian, wife, mother, sister, aunt, grandmother and friend. She home-schooled for many years and enjoyed being home with her boys when they were young. She loved being a grandma and her grandkids will cherish every memory they have with her.
She was generous in every way and always eager and willing to help anyone in any way that she could. She had a strong faith and her number one prayer was that everyone she knew and loved would be saved and know Christ as their personal savior. She lived to serve God and strived to please him. She enjoyed learning to play the keyboard, reading, going to dinner with friends, and being with family. She will be missed by many.
Laura is survived by her daughter, Alesha (Dave) Ross, sons Jesse (Emily) Smith, Jon Smith and Joel Smith, grandchildren Isaac, Jamie, Sam, Timarie and Jackson Ross, sister Dee Rivers and several nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by husband William Smith, her parents John and Marion Rivers, older twin brothers Terry & Larry Rivers, her twin sister Linda and two children she was looking forward to meeting in heaven.
A celebration of Laura’s life will be held June 10 at 11 a.m. at the 1st Baptist Church, 127 Sam Beck Rd. in Deer Lodge with pastor Tim Olsen officiating. A potluck luncheon to follow.
Oliver (Smokey) Thompson
Oliver (Smokey) Thompson passed away on June 6, 2016 at the Deer Lodge Care Center in Deer Lodge, from Alzheimers disease. He was 90 years old. Cremation has taken place.
Smokey was born to Edmund and Alma (Underwood) Thompson on December 9, 1925 in Dillon, the last of eight children. He and his family lived in Bannock (their house is still standing) where Edmund was a miner. Edmund passed away at an early age from consumption and his family moved to Dillon where Smokey finished grade school, attended Beaverhead County High School, and one quarter at Western Montana College. He played football and basketball for the Beavers and football for the Bulldogs.
Smokey met Betty Lou Glassey from Wisdom in high school in 1945 and they were married on May 8, 1948 in Wisdom. Two daughters, Diane Kay and Linda Lee, were born in Dillon while Smokey worked for the Dillon Creamery. He was hired by the Montana Power Company in 1950 and the family transferred to Butte where Smokey completed his apprenticeship as an electrical lineman in 1953.
He was transferred to Deer Lodge in October 1959 and he and Betty Lou have resided there since. Smokey was named town manager for the Montana Power Company in 1974 and retired after 38 years of service on April 1, 1988. He became a volunteer fireman 1960, was on the Board of Directors for Pioneer Federal Savings and Loan, and belonged to the Baehr Electric bowling team for many years. The bowling team was very close, and once a year they and their wives took a trip on a bus where they had a wonderful time and many fun memories were made. Smokey was a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather who had a great sense of humor (even up to his final days); he a very honest, generous, and caring man.
Those who preceeded him in death are his parents, Edmund and Alma Thompson; his three brothers: Rayburn (Cat), Lewis (Murph) and Elvin; his four sisters: Velma, Meda, Estella, and Verna; several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Survivors are his wife of 68 years Betty Lou; daughters Diane of Missoula, and Linda Lee (George) Hucke of Fallon, Nev.; grandson Wade (Cathy) Hucke of Dillon; granddaughter Wende Hook of Fallon; great-grandsons Derrick Hucke of Havre, and Donovan Hucke of Dillon; great-granddaughters Ali Pokrandt and Camryn Hook of Fallon; and several nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church in Deer Lodge on Thursday, June 9 at 11 a.m. Luncheon will follow the service at the Presbyterian Christian Education Building at 507 5th Street. In lieu of flowers, please donate in Smokey’s name to the First Presbyterian Church, 500 Milwaukee Avenue, Deer Lodge, MT 59722 or the Deer Lodge Elks, PO Box #1737, Deer Lodge, MT 59722.
Lawrence D. Wells
Lawrence D. Wells was born to Ross and Bessie (Cornell) Wells in Big Timber, on July 16, 1953. He grew up in Deer Lodge and attended public school. In 1971 he was married to Kathy Stevens, and had three children, Jeffery, Dave, and Darian.
Larry was a proficient lumber grader along with a few other opportunities at various saw mills. When the sawmill opportunities dwindled, Larry went to trucking. He later married Carol Dietrich and they resided in Oregon. Larry moved back to Deer Lodge, where he met Alese Moore.
Larry was known as a musician, and said that his love for music was a lifetime hobby. He also enjoyed hunting and fishing. Larry was a kind man who would help anyone he could. After being diagnosed with an aggressive brain cancer, he passed at his home in Deer Lodge on May 26, 2016. Larry was preceded in death by parents Ross and Bessie, and his infant son Jeffery. He is survived through his significant other Alese Moore, sons Dave and Darian (Lori) Wells, sisters Karen (Steve) Stevenson, Sandra (Brad) Ford, and Linda (Pat) Clark, his brother Jim Wells, grandchildren Ashlee, Kaitlynn, and Lane Wells. A memorial service by Tim Olsen will be at the Elks Club at 2 p.m. on June 12, 2016.