Benjamin Arthur Laws, 91, who owned and ran HCL Equipment for many years, died at Billings Health and Rehabilitation on Saturday, June 30, 2012.
The son of Benjamin Citone Laws and Helen Marie Keating Laws, he was born May 31, 1921, in Riverton, Wyo. He graduated from Riverton High School in 1939.
Upon his enrollment at the University of Wyoming, he participated in the Reserve Officers Training Corps program. In 1943 he was awarded a bachelor’s degree and received a commission as a second lieutenant in the Army.
He underwent basic training in Fort Benning, Ga., then was sent to Tyler, Texas. He married Dorothy Louise Moxley, a high school art teacher, on Sept. 16, 1944, in Little Rock, Ark.
Shortly after the wedding he shipped out to New Guinea. After his discharge from the Army as a captain, the three moved to Billings, where he began working at HCL Equipment. He became sole owner of the business and ran it until he retired in 1986.
He served for many years as the scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 6. He played and marched in parades with the American Legion Drum and Bugle Corps and was active as a member of the Optimist Club, the Elks Club and the Chamber of Commerce.
He had served as president of the Truck Equipment Dealers Association in the Montana region. An avid golfer, he had been president of the Board of Directors of Yellowstone Country Club. He was a member and leader of the Churches of Christ in Billings and Laurel.
After Mrs. Laws died in 2000, he became a volunteer at a local grade school. He also made the rounds of retirement homes and rehabilitation facilities, singing hymns and popular music from the ’40s and ’50s.
Survivors include sons, Ben Jr. and David; and three grandchildren.
A celebration of his life will be held from 1:30-4 p.m. on Thursday, July 5, in the dining room at Billings Health and Rehabilitation, 2115 Central Ave. Interment will follow in Yellowstone Valley Memorial Park, 3605 Grand Ave. Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary has charge of arrangements.
Memorials may be sent to Rocky Mountain Hospice, 2110 Overland Ave., Suite 111, Billings, MT 59102; or Boy Scouts of America at www.montanabsa.org/.