Meldora Legard, 93, who was involved with the family farm, died Dec. 8, 2012, at St. John’s Transitional Care Center in Billings.
She was born in 1918, the third of eight children born to Gustav and Ansoph Skurdal. She attended schools in Belmont and Lavina and Business College in Billings.
She married Almond Legard in 1939 in Red Lodge. She worked in the family business of raising wheat, oats and barley. She also had a large garden and canned vegetables and raised fish, dogs, chickens and mink.
For the last five years, she had lived at Highgate Senior Living in Billings.
Survivors include sons, Thomas Legard and Gerald Legard; a daughter, Linda Brooks; eight grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; and a sister, Arclista Marick.
Visitation was Aug. 10 at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary. Services were at the Lavina Methodist and American Lutheran Church in Lavina on Aug. 11. A luncheon followed at the Lavina Senior Citizens Center. Interment was in Belmont Cemetery.
Memorials may be made to the Lutheran Church of Lavina.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:22
Charles “Chuck” Murphy, 53, who had owned and operated several towing companies, died Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012.
He was born Jan. 24, 1958, in Newburgh, N.Y., to Thomas J. Murphy and Helen (Baxter) Ryan. He learned to walk after a correction of club feet and attended schools in Maybrook and Newburgh, N.Y.
He owned and operated Murphy’s Security in Petersburg, Va., and several towing companies in New York, Pennsylvania and Florida before settling in Billings, where he married Sherry. He also had worked as a taxi driver, correctional officer, hot dog vendor and ambulance driver but always returned to the towing industry.
Survivors include his wife; a daughter, Lacoria; a son, Jonathon; a sister, Donna Herring of Brooksville, Fla.; and brothers, James Ryan of New Hyde Park, N.Y., and David Cook of Billings.
Family, friends, members of the Yellowstone Valley Towing Association, and local owners and operators of towing companies met at Murphy’s Towing on Aug. 15 to have a procession from Murphy’s to a celebration of life at the Central Park shelter. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:21
Coral Ann Bobo-Baker, 52, who worked in the mental health department at the Veterans Administration, died Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012, at her home in Billings.
She was born Feb. 5, 1960, in Riverside, Calif., the daughter of Grady and Mary (Short) Bobo. She grew up in Great Falls.
She worked as a licensed practical nurse at both Billings hospitals before working at the VA.
Survivors include her mother; brothers, Ray Bobo and Tom Bobo; four children, Dustin, Erin, Ryan and Adrianne; and two grandchildren.
A celebration of her life was held Aug. 11 at her home, 1001 Toole Circle. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:20
Grace “Grammy” Hoxsey, 100, one of the founders of the Great Falls Genealogy Society and Library, died Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2012, at her home in Billings.
She was born Jan. 26, 1912, in Lacona, Iowa, to Roy Alvin and Minerva (Bennett) Carpenter. She married Walter Charles Hoxsey on Sept. 29, 1934, in Bethany, Mo. After their marriage, they moved to California until 1970 when they moved to Oregon.
In 1973, they moved to Great Falls. Mrs. Hoxsey left Great Falls in 1981 to move to Billings.
Survivors include a daughter, Judi Steinhauer; three grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
Private family services have taken place. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:18
Christine Kober Tilley, 54, of Billings, who had run numerous businesses from home, died Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012, in Salt Lake City of complications from open heart surgery.
She was born April 28, 1958, in Billings, the daughter of Arnold Kober and Margaret Ann Lepp Kober. She was baptized in the Lutheran faith on May 18, 1958, and confirmed in the church on May 28, 1972.
She graduated from West High School in 1976 and took a job in the housekeeping department at St. Vincent Hospital. She married Phillip Tilley on Aug. 11, 1979.
Mrs. Tilley had twice worked for St. Vincent Hospital for a total of eight years. Businesses she ran from home included day care, jewelry making and janitorial services, and she also worked five years for the Heights Wal-Mart.
She was known for her cooking and as a lover of animals. She also had a rock garden.
Survivors include her husband; sons, Jeremy, Jason and Timothy, all of Billings; a grandson; her mother, of Billings; and siblings, Kenton of Ferndale, Wash., and Keith, Karl and Karen, all of Billings.
Visitation was Aug. 14 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. Services were Aug. 15 at Trinity Lutheran Church. Arrangements were by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:16
Anne Marie Cowan, 89, who was a nurse and taught nursing courses, died Aug. 5, 2012, at RiverStone Hospice.
She was born June 24, 1923, in Columbia, Mo., the second daughter of Albert M. and Mabel A. Cowan. She graduated from nursing school in 1944 and joined the Army, where she cared for injured soldiers returning by ship to the United States.
After World War II, she worked at hospitals and nursing schools while pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing and later a master’s degree in the same field from St. Louis University. She worked at Stanford University Hospital before becoming a traveling nurse educator for the American Red Cross, covering Idaho and Montana and teaching numerous courses to county health nurses during the ’50s.
She was a member of the faculty of Southern Illinois University prior to joining the faculty of the Montana State University College of Nursing, where she taught courses in medical-surgical nursing and in management and leadership until her retirement in 1988.
She was a volunteer at the Alberta Bair Theater, Global Village and, until very recently, Meals on Wheels. She was active in the Yellowstone Valley Audubon Society and was a member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church.
Survivors include a sister, Judith L. Johnson of Lexington, Ky.; a brother, Michael A. of Chesterfield, Mo.; and a friend and companion, Ruth Vanderhorst.
At her request, no funeral was planned though Masses will be said in her memory. A gathering of family and friends to celebrate her life will be announced soon. Arrangements are by Cremation & Funeral Gallery.
Gifts in her honor may be made to the Yellowstone Audubon Society, Meals on Wheels and RiverStone Hospice.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 22:16
John D. Whitby, 64, a security guard and police officer for most of his life, died Aug. 3, 2012, of cancer.
He was born May 14, 1948, to John W. Whitby and Iris Gibson Whitby in London, Ontario, Canada. The family moved to Centerport, N.Y., in 1953 where he attended school and joined the Navy Reserve his senior year. After graduation he went into active duty.
He married Patricia Knight on Aug. 26, 1981, in Billings. He worked as a security guard and police officer.
Survivors include his wife; sons, Dan Whitby and Jason Whitby; two granddaughters; a great-granddaughter; and a brother, Jeff Whitby, and sister, Janice Whitby, both of California.
Visitation was Aug. 7 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. A gathering followed at 1635 Old Hardin Road.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 22:16
John Schafnitz, 90, a bank loan officer who trained pilots during World War II, died July 29, 2012.
He was born Dec. 1, 1921, to Frank Sr. and Susanna Schafnitz. He grew up in Billings and worked on the family farm. He later jumped on a rail car and headed for California, then hitchhiked back from Helena and began driving a soda pop delivery truck for Sunshine Beverage Co.
During World War II, he worked for Douglas Aircraft in Long Beach, Calif. In 1942 he enlisted in the Army Air Corps. In November 1943, he earned his wings and married Myrtle McCann. He was stationed in Kansas, Texas, and Florida, training pilots for overseas battle in single- and twin-engine aircraft, including the B-17.
After discharge from the Army Air Corps as a first lieutenant, Mr. and Mrs. Schafnitz moved back to Billings and he became a loan officer at Midland Bank. He retired after 37 years and traveled widely with his wife until her death in 1989.
For another 20 years he had a new traveling companion, Margaret “Marge” Scott, whom he met through his sister and sister-in-law.
Survivors include a sister, Catherine Jones; children, John Schafnitz and Jane Hughes; three grandchildren; three great-granddaughters; and Ms. Scott’s daughter and son, Bonnie and Jerry Scott.
Services were Aug. 6 at Dahl Funeral Chapel.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 22:14
Charles James Kerr, 63, died at his home on Aug. 2, 2012.
He was the son of James and Agnes Kerr, born Aug. 3, 1948, in Roanoke, Va. He served in the Army and was honorably discharged in 1973. He married Margaret Sedlock-Elliott in 1995.
Survivors include his wife; a sister, Karen Hardy of Myrtle Beach, S.C.; and a nephew, Jared Kerr of Billings.
A vigil was held Aug. 7 at Holy Rosary church with a Memorial Mass on Aug. 8. Interment of ashes will be in Yellowstone County Veterans Cemetery. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 22:13
James “Jim” Robert Jackson, 77, of Billings, who owned and operated Big Sky Feeds, died Friday, Aug. 3, 2012.
He was born June 24, 1935, in Skidmore, Mo., the son of Robert and Adaline (Bennett) Jackson. He graduated from Skidmore High School in 1953 and received a bachelor’s degree in vocational agriculture from the University of Missouri in 1957. He married Ruth Marie Larner on July 8, 1962.
He managed Kenny Shoe stores in Idaho, Oregon and California before going to work for Ralston Purina in 1967, becoming a district sales manager.
He owned and operated Big Sky Feeds for 34 years and also Jackson Quarter Horses, the beginning of the “Shine on Jack” line.
Survivors include his wife and daughters, Jennifer Jackson and Belinda Jackson, all of Billings; two granddaughters; and a brother, Duane Jackson.
Services were Aug. 8 at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary.
Memorials may be made to the Stephen Jackson Agricultural Scholarship, c/o West Nodaway School District, Burlington Junction, MO, or the Montana 4-H Foundation chapter of your choice.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 22:13