The Billings Outpost

James Johnson

James “Jim” Roger Johnson, 68, a self-employed arborist, died Sept. 14, 2014, of emphysema.

He was born in March 1946 in Butte to Leonard and Alice Johnson. During his childhood he lived in Glacier Park, Great Falls, Cody, Wyo., and Billings. He graduated from Billings West High School in 1965.

He joined the Navy right out of high school and served on the USS Bon Homme Richard during the Vietnam War.

He married Sue Barowky-Jackson in 1969, and they had a daughter, Nikole. They divorced in 1982.

He married Tracy Gerringa in 1989, and they had two daughters, Kelsey and Kaitlyn.

He had held various jobs but for the last 20 years or so was self-employed as an arborist. He also had a knack for fixing and building things.

Survivors include his wife, Tracy; daughters, Nikole Gribben, Kelsey and Kaitlyn; a grandson; and a brother, John.

Services will be held in the spring, and interment will be in Yellowstone National Veterans Cemetery in Laurel. Arrangements are by Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:36

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Mia Rose Garcia

Mia Rose Garcia, 5 months old, died Sept. 18, 2014.

She was born on April 13, 2014, in Billings to Alejandro Garcia and Kristine Knudsen.

Survivors include her parents; grandparents, Susan and Roger Knudsen and Tammy Weisbeck; and brothers, David and Marcus Garcia.

Visitation was Sept. 23, followed by a Christian Vigil Service at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. Funeral Mass was Sept. 24 at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:33

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Roberto F. Gutierrez

Roberto Fernandez Gutierrez, 58, an Internal Revenue Service employee, died Sept. 20, 2014, of a bleeding stroke.

He was born May 26, 1956, in Billings, the seventh child of nine of Cecilia and Vicente Gutierrez. When he was young, his family lived in Mossmain, east of Laurel, before moving into Billings.

He was a graduate of Billings Senior High School and was the first in his family to obtain a degree, a bachelor of science in business administration from Eastern Montana College, in 1982. After college, he was hired by Osco Drug as an assistant manager and moved to Wyoming.

He married Nina Magers at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Billings, and they recently celebrated 31 years together.

He was hired with the IRS in 1985, completed orientation in Cheyenne, Wyo., and was stationed in Sheridan, Wyo. After 12 years, the family moved back to Billings. He was planning to retire in 2015.

He volunteered as a Little League umpire for many years and also umpired softball. He drove the St. Patrick Co-Cathedral homebound bus for many years.

Survivors include his wife, Nina; children, Julia and Thomas; sisters, Yolanda, Terri, Eugenia and Martha; and a brother, Vincent.

Visitation will be from noon to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25, followed by a vigil at 6:30 p.m. at Dahl Funeral Chapel. Funeral Mass will be at noon Sept. 26 at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral. Interment will be in Calvary Cemetery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:32

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Keith McJunkin

Keith Eldon McJunkin, 80, of Red Lodge, who had owned Keith’s Electronics for many years in Red Lodge, died Sept. 20, 2014.

He was born in Forsyth on April 14, 1934. He married Shirley Lambrecht on May 3, 1957, and they were together for 56 years before her death.

Mr. McJunkin was a veteran who had served in Korea.

Survivors include a daughter, Lorena Rickard; sons, Keith and Dan; seven grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; a brother, Dennis; and sisters, Audrey Sweeney, Karen Fulford, Colleen Hermann and Donna VanVeckhoven.

Memorial Mass was held Sept. 22 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Laurel with inurnment following in Yellowstone National Cemetery. Dahl Funeral Chapel was in charge of arrangements.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:31

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Hazen Flickinger

Hazen D. Flickinger, 81, a longtime Highway Department employee, died at home on Friday afternoon, Sept. 19, 2014, after an extended illness.

He was born July 25, 1933, to Hazen D. and Ethel (Goodrich) Flickinger in Scobey. The family farmed and resided near Opheim, where he graduated as salutatorian of the class of 1951.

Soon after graduation he began his 41-year career with the Montana State Highway Department. In 1964 he received a civil engineering degree from Montana State University. That led to positions of state bridge inspector, head of road construction and maintenance supervisor until his retirement in 1993.

He married Dorothy Jones on Dec. 23, 1956. They lived in Havre for more than 25 years, then relocated to Billings in 2005.

Survivors include his wife; a daughter, Rene Freitag of Billings; two grandchildren; sisters, Mary Ann Omvig of Billings and Nina Walstad of Opheim; and a brother, Charles Flickinger of Opheim.

Services were Sept. 24 at Shiloh Methodist Church in Billings. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:30

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Alejandro Cristan

Alejandro “Pops” Cristan, 78, died Sept. 14, 2014.

He was born Nov. 2, 1935, in Corpus Christi, Texas, but moved to Montana in the mid ’50s. He was the son of Loreto Tristan and Eloisa Costilla Tristan.

His passions were drinking coffee, John Wayne movies, anything with a Chevy emblem on it and Harley Davidson.

Survivors include sisters, Antonia Villarreal, Estefana Breland, Cornelia Quintanilla and Rosa Cok, and a brother, Reyes Cristan, all of Texas; sons, Jeff, Michael and Patrick; daughters, Rose Starnes and Jennifer Kottke; 10 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Services will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, at Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:29

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Sherlen Rae Trafton

Sherlen “Sherry” Rae Trafton, 70, a dedicated volunteer, died at home on Sept. 15, 2014.

She was born in Miles City to Helen (Holmlund) and Sherman Trafton on July 26, 1944. She was part of the first graduating class of Billings West High School.

She spent her freshman year at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., before returning to Billings to complete an education degree at Eastern Montana College. She married Dwayne Zimmerman in June 1967.

She volunteered at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, cofounded the Parents of Preemies at St. Vincent Healthcare and supported the March of Dimes.

Survivors include her husband; children, Traci Zimmerman, Julie Zimmerman and Craig Zimmerman; three grandchildren; and siblings.

Services will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, at Cremation and Funeral Gallery.

Memorials may be given to the Ronald McDonald House, March of Dimes or Children’s Hospital Colorado in Denver.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:28

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Garnet Wells Wagner

Garnet Wells Wagner, 84, who had worked for grocery stores, died Sept. 14, 2014.

She was born Nov. 22, 1929, in Lovell, Wyo., the youngest of four daughters of Floyd and Bernice Wells. She married Paul Wagner on Sept. 25, 1948.

She had worked at Nalley’s, Skaggs and Evergreen IGA. She volunteered at Family Services and Harvest Church in Lockwood and was a member of Navy Mothers.

Survivors include a sister, Marge Nueman; and a brother, Roland Wells. She and her husband raised four boys, Mike, Mark, Rod and Brian; and she had six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 19, at Harvest Church, 1413 Rosebud Lane. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Donations may be made to Family Services or Harvest Church in Lockwood.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 14:58

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Jack Kenneth McCoy

Jack Kenneth McCoy, 71, a retired auto parts manager, died at 11:55 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014.

He was born in Sheridan, Wyo., on March 1, 1943, to Harry (Jack) McCoy and Wilma (Billie Burns) McCoy of the Diamond Cross Ranch in Birney. He lived on the ranch with his parents and four sisters until the age of 8, when he moved with his mother and sisters to Colstrip.

He attended Custer County High School in Miles City and worked for The 10 Spot, Valley Motor Supply and other garages. He competed in flat track motorcycle races all over Eastern Montana and the Dakotas, winning numerous trophies.

He married Diana Stoltz of Miles City in 1964. They moved to Great Falls in 1968, and he worked for many years as a parts man at City Chevrolet before becoming the parts manager at Don Ryan Olds.

He divorced in 1981 and in 1984 moved to Billings to work for the Rimrock Auto Group. He was parts manager there until his retirement in 2009.

He met his current wife, Sandy Campo, in Billings.

He had been a member of the Billings Rod and Gun Club.

Survivors include his wife; ex-wife, Diana Holliday of Fernly, Nev.; daughters, Shantelle Hutchinson of Great Falls and Shauna McCoy of Bozeman; “bonus” children, Ladonna Gratwohl of Laurel, Nancy Croston of Wyoming and Cody Buchanan of North Carolina; sisters, Linda Dormady of Billings, Judy Young of Great Falls and Sherri Braunstadter of Billings; 12 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Mr. McCoy did not want a funeral. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 14:57

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Donna May Wise

Donna May (Hofferber) Wise, 77, died of blood poisoning in the early morning of Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014.

She was born May 2, 1937, in Worden, one of six children of Alexander Hofferber and Elizabeth (Kuntz) Hofferber. She grew up farming near Pompeys Pillar and even scratched her name on the pillar before it was considered a landmark.

At the age of 11 she had a stroke, and it took her six months to learn to walk, talk and write again.

She eloped with Louis L.D. Wise in 1969. He died in 2011.

She had had many medical problems, including the loss of her tonsils and gall bladder; a broken ankle, leg and pinky finger; a uterine tumor; hysterectomy; knee replacement; breast cancer; a pelvic infection for which she had to endure 13 surgeries; a second bout of breast cancer; and a dislocation of her knee cap. She finally succumbed to blood poisoning.

Survivors include two brothers, Joe Hofferber and Allan Hofferber; two sisters, Alberta Grammens and Deloris Jensen; a daughter, Kristie Boelter; and two granddaughters.

A memorial service potluck will be held at 1 p.m. Sept. 20 at Riverfront Park in Billings.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 14:56

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