Robert A. “Bob” Hein, 92, who worked more than 40 years for the railroad, died May 18, 2012.
He was the oldest of five boys and three girls, born Feb. 28, 1920, in Billings to Alex and Mary Hein. He attended Billings schools but took a job with the Northern Pacific Railroad just short of graduation in order to help support his family. He worked more than 40 years for the railroad, taking time to serve in the Army overseas in World War II.
After the service he returned to Billings and built his own home for his family of three. He was a gardener, hunted and fished and taught himself to play the accordion and violin. In his younger years he played with his uncles and father at German weddings.
In recent years he had been a resident at Autumn Springs Assisted Living.
Survivors include a brother, Marvin, and a sister, Phyllis, both of Austin, Texas; brothers, Russell and Gary, both of Billings; a son-in-law, Tom Blevins, and his wife, Diane, of Billings, two great-grandchildren; and their mother, Terri Blevins, all of Billings.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 May 2012 22:44
Joseph Mehi, 88, of Billings, a longtime St. Vincent Healthcare employee who moved from Romania to the United States following World War II, died Sunday, May 20, 2012.
He was born Nov. 29, 1923 in Baia Mare, Romania, the son of Arpad and Erzsebet (Kondor) Mehi. He was inducted into the Romanian military, which was taken over by Germany. At the end of World War II, following the American liberation of the German prisoners of war, he became a POW of the Americans.
In 1946, he was released for recovery and rehabilitation at a Red Cross hospital in Austria. The Catholic Diocese of Chicago sponsored him to come to America in 1949. In 1950 he moved to Montana and became a U.S. citizenp.
On Feb. 14, 1955, he married Barbara Jean Fenlon at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral. He worked at St. Vincent Healthcare for 49 years. He built the St. Pius X Catholic Church altar in 1969.
Survivors include children, Mary Beth Mehi of North Aurora, Ill., Paul Mehi of Rainier, Wash., and Helen Madson of Billings; and two grandchildren.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 May 2012 22:43
Carolyn Leuthold, 79, of Molt and Columbia, Mo., a lifelong civic activist and consumer advocate, died April 6, 2012, at home of pancreatic cancer.
She was born in 1932 in Monterey Park, Calif. She was valedictorian of her high school class in Estacada, Ore., and received a scholarship to Lewis and Clark College, where she earned a degree in English, education and library science. She did graduate study at the University of Montana.
In 1956 she served as an International Farm Youth Exchange delegate to Belgium, the first trip in a lifetime of international travel. Later in life she also lived for short periods in New Zealand, England and Romania. Her last international travel was a visit to Myanmar to check on a project that has sent 600,000 books there.
She taught school in Grants Pass, Ore., and San Clemente, Calif. More recently, she helped operate the family cattle ranch in Montana.
She was chairman of Mental Health Associations in Sweetgrass and Stillwater counties and in Boone County, Missouri. She was active in the Lake Basin Homemakers, the Columbus Garden club and Friends of the Stillwater Library. She was a member of the Billings Unitarian Universalist Fellowship.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 23 May 2012 22:43
Bruce Thoricht, 61, of Billings, a retired meteorologist, died Monday, May 14, 2012, of cancer.
An avid student of movie and literature, he was fascinated by the natural world and loved science and technology. He had been a meteorologist for the National Weather Service and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in Billings. He assisted on many large forest fires and other incidents as a fire weather meteorologist.
He served in the Air Force for nearly 10 years.
Survivors include his wife, Tracy; a son, Michael; a daughter, Tembre Roller; and brothers, Craig of Doylestown, Ohio, Douglas of Concord, N.C., and Russell of Canton, Ohio.
A private service will be held for the family. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:59
Joshua Blake Lawrence, 26, of Billings, died the morning of Saturday, May 5, 2012.
He was born June 23, 1985, to his mother, Rene Lawrence. He had attended Senior High School and held various jobs.
Survivors include his mother; a sister, Vanessa; grandfather, Bud; stepfather, Harley; and brother, Claire.
Services were held May 12 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:58
Jason Michael Cucciardi, 39, manager of Express Pawn, died May 10, 2012.
He was born Feb. 17, 1973, in Billings, to Dave and Judy Cucciardi.
He attended Rimrock Elementary, Lewis and Clark and Senior High schools and earned a degree in business from Montana State University Billings.
Survivors include his parents; brothers, Jeremy and Nathan Cucciardi; and Tammy Smith and her children, Clay and Jessie.
Funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral. A reception will follow at the church and Rite of Committal will take place after lunch at Yellowstone Valley Memorial Park. Michelotti-Sawyers is in charge of arrangements.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:57
Gabriele “Gaby” Kelly, 59, who was born in Germany, died Thursday, May 10, 2012.
She was born Gabriele Schweikart, the daughter of Alfred and Anna Schweikart of Gersthofen, Germany. She married her husband of 34 years, Patrick Kelly, in Augsburg, Germany, on Dec. 29, 1977.
She made weekend trips on the boat with her immediate family and took annual vacations to Germany.
Survivors include her husband; two daughters, Monika Kelly of Billings and Christina Edel of Denver, Colo.; two grandchildren and one soon to be born; her mother, Anna Schweikart of Gersthofen, Germany; and two brothers, Harald Schweikart of Augsburg, Germany, and Frank Schweikart of Kaufering, Germany.
A gathering will be held in her home from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 19. Contact any member of the family for her address if you would like to attend. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:56
James Orr Gar, 58, who excelled in team roping and bull riding, died Friday, May 4, 2012.
He was born Nov. 2, 1953, to Stanley and Alice Gar in Malta. He attended school at Rock Creek Elementary at the Gar Ranch and high school in Roy. He served in the Army from 1973–1975.
In 1983 he started his family with the birth of a daughter, Tara, and another daughter, Tammy, in 1984.
In 1993, he met Lana Krull, and they started their family with the birth of a daughter, Katharine, in 1994; a son, Jared, in 1996; a daughter, Annie, in 1999; and a son, Landon, in 2000.
He and his family camped and hunted in the Gravelies, and he also fished.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:56
Marilyn M. Hedrick, 82, died May 13, 2012.
She was born Dec. 29, 1929, to Harry I. Zachow and Zelia Breidung Zachow in Spokane, Wash. She spent her early years in Spokane and Spirit Lake, Idaho, graduating from Lewis and Clark High in Spokane.
She married James M. Simpson in 1948. They had three children, Paul, Jacquelyn and Jerry, and later divorced.
She married Stanley W. Hedrick in Billings on July 11, 1982, and made her home here. She and her husband traveled extensively, and she joined Global Grannies after his death, traveling to France, Canada, Branson, Mo., and the Passion Play in South Dakota.
Survivors include Paul Simpson of Polson, Jacquelyn Sullivan of Billings and Jerry Simpson of Glendale, Ariz.; four grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; two stepchildren, Judy Arnold of Butte and Sheena Lamach of Polson; and their children and grandchildren.
Last Updated on Friday, 18 May 2012 13:55
Lois Lee Berg, 86, of Billings, died Saturday, May 5, 2012, at St. John’s Lutheran Home.
She was born Nov. 12, 1925, in Melstone and grew up on the family ranch near Mosby. On March 30, 1954, she married Jadie Berg in Circle. They lived in Winnett, operating a gas station until moving to Livingston in the fall of 1972. She moved to Pryor in 1998 to live with her son while recovering from breast cancer, then moved to Billings in 2006.
Survivors include a son, Jodey Berg of Pryor; a daughter, Darlene Mann of Livingston; a brother, Hanley McGiboney of Lewistown; six grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.
Graveside services will be held at 2 p.m. Monday, May 28, in Roundup Cemetery. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Memorials may be made to St. John’s Lutheran Home, 3940 Rimrock Road, Billings, MT 59101; or Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch, P.O. Box 80807, Billings, MT 59108-0807.
Last Updated on Thursday, 10 May 2012 21:29