The Billings Outpost

George Benedict

George Benedict, 76, a retired professor of philosophy at Montana State University Billings, died in the early morning hours of Nov. 20, 2014, in Tacoma, Wash.

He was born July 6, 1938, to Dwain and Estella Benedict in Moscow, Idaho.  He was a graduate of Moscow High School and attended the University of Idaho in Moscow on a ROTC scholarship.

After active duty in the Navy, he had a brief career making poppies for disabled veterans at the Veterans Administration hospital in San Diego. He earned a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Idaho and a doctorate from the University of New York at Buffalo. His area of expertise was logic, and he was a Charles Sanders Peirce scholar.

He retired as a professor of philosophy at MSU Billings in 2004.

Survivors include a son, Craig Benedict of Bozeman; a sister, Carolyn Kasper of Washington; a grandchild; and a longtime companion, Renee Duval, and her sons, Kyle and Zachary, both of Billings.

Interment of ashes was planned for later. Edwards Memorial Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.

Memorials may be sent to the MSU Billings Foundation, where Dr. Benedict was professor emeritus.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:16

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Larry Dillinger

Larry Dillinger, 76, of Billings, a longtime railroad employee, died Nov. 16, 2014.

He was born Sept. 8, 1938, in Zanesville, Ohio, to Mildred and Carl Dillinger. He worked for Burlington Northern Railroad for 35 years and served in the Air Force and Army National Guards for eight years.

Survivors include his wife of 31 years, Fern; children, Brian, Kelly Kinney and Richard; stepsons, Dean, Keith and Curt Ballew; a twin sister, Linda Shepherd; and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

A graveside service was held Nov. 21 at Sunset Memorial Gardens. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:15

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Gordon Bolte

Gordon Eugene Bolte, 82, who had owned and operated several businesses, died Monday, Nov. 17, 2014, at his home in Billings.

He was born Sept. 12, 1932, in Mankato, Minn., to Fred and Zelda Bolte.  He moved to Montana as a young child and graduated from Park County High School in Livingston in 1950.

He married Shirley Haymond, and they had four children: Michael, David, Shannon and Shelley. They were later divorced, and he married Anne Egan.  David, Avril and Daniel joined his family of children. He and Mrs. Egan celebrated their 46th wedding anniversary on Nov. 9.

Mr. Bolte was a rancher in his early years and ran the A&W Chicken Delight on Grand Avenue for several years. He had owned B&B Cold Storage and finished his career working at West Park Plaza and other venues where he and his wife had Nuts by Bolte, selling cinnamon roasted almonds and pecans.

Survivors include his wife, of Billings; children, Mike of Shepherd, Dave of Glenrock, Wyo., David of Billings, Shannon of Denver, Colo., and Shelley of Yuma, Ariz.; and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

A family memorial will be next summer. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:14

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Margie Dahrling

Margie (Margaret) Ibach Dahrling, 69, died at her home on Nov. 21, 2014, of cancer.

She was born April 8, 1945, to Frank Ibach and Margaret Mastel in Hazelton, N.D. They later moved to Billings, where she graduated from Senior High School. She married Joel Dahrling, and they later divorced.

Mrs. Dahrling worked for a few dry cleaners and had worked for Wetzels Quality Cleaners for 30 years until her health started failing.

She had received care from Rocky Mountain Hospice.

Survivors include her ex-husband; children, Shelly Roll, Brian Dahrling, Joey Dahrling and Jason Dahrling; four grandchildren; two brothers; and five sisters.

Services will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 29, at Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:14

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Joan Silvis

Joan Silvis, 80, who raised nine children and worked for 25 years at Sears, died Nov. 18, 2014.

She was born Nov. 6, 1934, to Earl and Clara Burgoon in Emporium, Pa., the oldest of seven children. She graduated from Cameron County High School and was briefly enrolled in nursing school.

She married Glenn W. Silvis on May 2, 1953. They traveled to several states and countries before retiring to Montana in 1974.

Mr. Silvis always wanted enough children to field a baseball team, and they had nine children, 23 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Silvis stayed home and raised the children until they moved to Montana. She then worked at Sears for 25 years, followed by jobs at Hallmark, Shopko and Ben Franklin.

She had been a member of St. Pius X Parish since 1974.

Survivors include her husband; children, Steve Silvis, Val Bradley, Pam Mulkey, Greg Silvis, Brenda Renken, Eric Silvis, Beth Roach, Mark and Todd Silvis; sisters, Marian and Beverly; and a brother, Jim.

Services were held Nov. 21 at St. Pius X Catholic Church, 717 18th St. W.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:13

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Etola Cook

Etola Cook, 96, died Nov. 18, 2014, at Aspen Meadows in Billings.

She was the youngest child of Frank and Nellie Schallenberger, born Sept. 6, 1918, in Ekalaka. She was raised on a farm near Ekalaka and married to Lyman J. Cook on Dec. 15, 1938, in Baker.

In the spring of 1939 they moved to Gardiner, where Mr. Cook worked in Yellowstone National Park. They later moved to Oregon, where he worked as a logger and picked and bundled ferns to supplement their income. They moved to Billings in 1942.

Survivors include sons, Clinton Cook of Billings and Darwen Cook of Chico, Calif.; a daughter, Sharon Kolman of Helena; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

A private family graveside memorial service was planned. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Last Updated on Thursday, 27 November 2014 12:12

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Valentine ‘Val’ Ott

Valentine “Val” Ott, 95, who built and operated the Big Dipper Drive-In, died in his sleep on Sunday, Nov. 16, 2014, at the RiverStone Hospice House.

He was born Jan. 21, 1919, in Estavan, Saskatchewan, Canada, the son of Felix and Mathilde (Michel) Ott. He was one of 13 brothers and sisters. In 1922 his parents moved the family to Fromberg and farmed until the end of the Great Depression.

Mr. Ott enlisted in the Army in 1940 and served at Honolulu before the Pearl Harbor attack. He returned to Montana after medical treatment.

He worked with the Northern Pacific Railroad in Laurel for 20 years. He also built one motel, then a second, an apartment complex, houses, a mini mall and two fast food restaurants, including the original Big Dipper Drive-In, which he operated until 1977. He retired at age 80.

He married Frances M. Schmidt on Valentine’s Day in 1942 and celebrated their 72nd wedding anniversary this year. He had received care from RiverStone Health and RiverStone Hospice House.

Survivors include a son, Bob Ott; two grandchildren; a brother, Michael Ott of California; and a sister, Annie Rekdal of Billings.

Funeral Mass will be at noon Thursday, Nov. 20, at St. Patrick Co-Cathedral, followed by burial in Sunset Memorial Gardens. Arrangements are by Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Donations may be made to RiverStone Health, 123 S. 27th St., Billings, MT 59101-4200.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 November 2014 13:28

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Nickola Rafter

Nickie Rafter, 53, of Billings, who worked at COR Enterprises, died Friday, Nov. 14, 2014, in Billings.

She was born in Bozeman on Oct. 18, 1961, to Wendell and Sherall Rafter.  She graduated from Bozeman High School in 1979.

She participated in Special Olympics and in Growth Thru Art.

Survivors include her father, Garry Rafter of Helena, Rixon Rafter of Ketchikan, Alaska, and Kathy Armstrong of Chester; stepfather, Carl Franks; and by Teddy Alexander.

Services were Nov. 19 at COR Enterprises. Inurnment was planned later. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Memorials can be made to COR Enterprises, 2121 Lampman Drive, Billings MT 59101.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 November 2014 13:27

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C. Louise Schmaing

C. Louise “Wheezy” Schmaing, 64, who had worked in several jobs, died of leukemia in the early morning hours of Nov. 17, 2014.

She was born June 9, 1950, in Billings to Bud and Jane Hutchinson. On April 9, 1986, she married Michael Schaming. They spent most of their life together on Frances Lane until in 2005 they moved into a new home on Lake Elmo Drive.

She had worked for Safeway Stores, Boise Cascade and as a forewomen at Interstate Brands.

She had received a stem cell transplant on June 1.

Survivors include her husband; her mother; children, Wesley Herren, Susan Hirsch, Miken Harnish and Tara Brown; a brother, Dev Hutchinson; sisters, Myral Yanchisin, Patsy Warden, Audrey Hutchinson and Jeanie Philhower; and eight grandchildren.

Friends and family will celebrate her life at noon Friday, Nov. 21, at the Eagles Club, 526 Laurie Lane. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Memorials may be made in her name to Help for Homeless Pets, P.O. Box 1282, Billings, MT 59103.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 November 2014 13:26

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Cole D. Hammond

Cole Derick Hammond, 31, who counseled people with disabilities, died on the morning of Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014.

Born Jan. 26, 1983, he was raised in Saco by his parents, Fred and Gayle Hammond. He graduated from Saco High School in 2001 and moved to Billings that fall to attend Rocky Mountain College.

He married Heather Shea in August 2005. He was a talented musician who jammed on guitar with his friends. He was working toward a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling.

He had been working for the state of Montana helping people with disabilities while struggling with a disability of his own. For the past four years, Mr. Hammond struggled with an undiagnosed medical condition that caused him great pain.

Survivors include his wife; a son, Sheamus, of Billings; and parents.

Visitation will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 14, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 15. Services will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, at Dahl Funeral Chapel with a luncheon to follow. Ashes will be laid to rest in a private family ceremony in Saco.

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 November 2014 09:26

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