The Billings Outpost

S. Kay Nelson

S. Kay Nelson, 74, who battled Parkinson’s disease for 41 years, died Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012, at RiverStone Hospice House.

She was born on May 19, 1938, in Billings, the oldest of three girls of Max and Lovey Conover.

She attended Broadview Public School and Montana State College, where she earned a bachelor of science degree and was a cheerleader for the 1956 national championship football team. After college she married her high school sweetheart, Keith Nelson.

They lived in Alberton, where she was a home economics teacher for several years, then ran the Head Start Program. They moved back to Broadview, where she substitute taught while her health was still good.

She was active in the Broadview Evangelical Church and played the organ on Sunday mornings. She had received care from Autumn Care.

Survivors include her husband of 52 years; a son, Kevin; a daughter, Kim Craig; six grandchildren; and two sisters, Susan Lane and Ann Brehm.

Visitation was Nov. 17 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. A celebration of her life was Nov. 18 at Faith Evangelical Church. Graveside services were Nov. 19 at Sunset Memorial Gardens.

Memorials may be sent to Broadview Evangelical Church or Broadview Seniors.

Last Updated on Saturday, 24 November 2012 13:12

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Grace Sexton

Grace Sexton, 93, a longtime Billings resident who was active in her church, died at home on Friday, Nov. 16, 2012.

She was born Feb. 8, 1919, in Calvin, N.D., to Fred and Anastasia (Fitzgerald) Bittner.

After graduating from teaching college, she spent two years teaching elementary school before marrying John L. Sexton on Aug. 2, 1941. They spent the first years of their marriage living on various Army bases.

When Mr. Sexton was deployed to Germany in World War II, she moved back to Calvin to take care of their family.

She had received care from Rocky Mountain Hospice.

Survivors include daughters, Kathy Grotbo of Columbus, Carol Neibauer of Bozeman and Pat George of Missoula; sons, John of Louisiana and Rick of Bellevue, Wash.; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Visitation and a Vigil service were Nov. 20 at Dahl Funeral Chapel. Funeral Mass was Nov. 21 at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral with interment in Holy Cross Cemetery. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Donations may be made to the Billings Food Bank or Rocky Mountain Hospice.

Last Updated on Saturday, 24 November 2012 13:12

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Alma Fletcher Koerner

Alma Fletcher Koerner, 102, of Miles City, known to friends and family as “Toots” and “Aunt Toots,” died Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012, at Billings Butterfly Homes.

She was born in Herman, Neb., on Dec. 23, 1909, the sixth child of Lee and Bessie Fletcher. The family was completed with four more siblings.

In 1917, the family moved to Roundup, traveling by train. In 1924 they moved to Miles City, where she graduated from Custer County High School in 1929.

She studied to become a teacher and later taught in a country school. She met Clarence Koerner in 1932, and they were married for 49 years. They lost an infant son, Fredrick, in 1937.

Mr. Koerner served from 1942-45 in Europe during World War II while Mrs. Koerner and Sue Fletcher worked and spent time with family in Washington and Oregon.

Mr. and Mrs. Koerner then lived at Fort Keogh near Miles City. He retired in 1972, and they moved into Miles City.

In the 27 years after his death, she was involved in the church circle at First Methodist Church and spent time at the senior center. She played cards and bingo every week and had a weekly appointment at the hair salon.

Survivors include nieces, nephews and a sister-in-law, Ann Fletcher.

Visitation will be from 3-7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29, at Cremation & Funeral Gallery, 29 Eighth St. W. in Billings. Services will be at 11:30 a.m. Nov. 30 at Miles City First Methodist Church.

Memorials may be made to the Miles City First Methodist Church, 24 N. 11th St., Miles City, MT 59301.

Last Updated on Saturday, 24 November 2012 12:50

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William David Collins

Services will be Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012, for William David Collins, 93, whose jobs included buying and then selling trucks after converting them to farm use.

He was born June 5, 1919, at Newton Grove, a post office 25 miles northwest of Custer. His parents were Albert Collins and Lillian Bailey; he was number five of 10 children. He attended the one-room Hills View School, graduated from Custer High School in June 1937 and attended one semester at Bozeman College.

During the early years the entire family worked on the Collins homestead farm and ranch in northern Yellowstone County. In September 1939, Mr. Collins married Maybelle White in Red Lodge.

His jobs included leasing and managing the Collins farm and ranch operation for six years; selling cars and trucks for Archie Cochrane Ford for 16 years; and, from 1982-1996, traveling with his wife and purchasing trucks in Texas, North Dakota, Kansas, Nevada, Oregon and Washington, taking them to Billings and converting them for ranch and farm use, then selling them to farmers and ranchers in Montana and Wyoming.

During World War II, he worked as a warehouse superintendent at Hill Field Airbase in Ogden, Utah. During the 1950s, he operated a dry-land farm in the Colby, Kan., area.

Survivors include his wife; sons, Noel of Sunland, Calif., and Boyd of Peachtree City, Ga.; a daughter, Rachelle of New York City; four grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; and a brother, Arthur of Billings.

Services will be at 1 p.m. Saturday at Cremation and Funeral Gallery, 29 Eighth St. W. Inurnment will follow in Bridger Cemetery.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:18

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Cindi Rykowski

Cindi Rykowski, 43, died Nov. 5, 2012.

She was born to William and Donna Calvert on Jan. 9, 1969, in Brookline, Mass. She spent many summers in Cooke City with her Grandma Nordquist.

She graduated from Billings West High School in 1987 and married Ed on June 5, 1993.

Survivors include her husband; a daughter, Ariel; sons, Taylor, Eddy, Sam, Jon, Joshua, Shawn and Aarron; 12 grandchildren; mother; and a brother, Bill.

A private family ceremony was planned. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Memorials may be made to the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:15

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Naomi L. Dalley

Naomi Lanore Dalley, 97, who had worked in agricultural offices and at City Hall in Billings, died at her home in Billings on Nov. 10, 2012.

She was born on a farm in Hettinger, N.D., and studied one year at Valley City Teachers College in Fargo, N.D., and six months at Fargo Business College. She then worked at Fargo Agricultural School before moving to Washington and working at several agricultural offices.

Moving to Billings, she married Joseph William Dalley in 1952. She designed, and together with her husband, built their dream house on Custer Avenue, which was vacant farmland at the time.

Mr. Dalley died in 1979. In 2007, Mrs. Dalley sold the house and moved in with a daughter, Kalyn, and her husband.

Mrs. Dalley was a charter member of the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd. She had been involved in Girl Scouts, 4-H and dog shows with her daughters.

Survivors include daughters, Diana and Kalyn; two grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Visitation was Nov. 13 at Cremation and Funeral Gallery. Services were at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd on Nov. 14. Interment was in Sunset Memorial Gardens.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:14

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Shirley O’Leary

Shirley O’Leary, 90, who had been a secretary and housewife, died at St. John’s Lutheran Home in Billings on Nov. 6, 2012.

She was born in Milwaukee on Feb. 17, 1922, to Herbert Rau and Irma (Knobel) Rau. She was raised in West Allis, Wis. After graduating from high school, she moved to Montana in 1946. A year later she met her future husband, Barry Joseph O’Leary. He died Aug. 2, 1981.

She made stained glass, baked and cooked, traveled and played golf. She was a volunteer at St. Vincent Hospital for 40 years, working at the Cherrynook and the gift shops. She also did hospital visits for St. Pius X Catholic Church.

Survivors include a daughter, Sharon A. Kummerfeldt; twin siblings, John and Judy Soderman; and three grandsons.

Memorial Mass was Nov. 9 at St. Pius X Catholic Church. Private family interment took place at Holy Cross Cemetery, before Mass. Arrangements were in the care of Dahl Funeral Chapel.

Memorials may be made to Homeward Bound Ministries, P.O. Box 20788, Billings, MT 59104.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:13

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Alexander Michael Parker

Alexander Michael Parker, 26, of Billings, who attended Montana State University Bozeman as a math major, died Sunday, Nov. 4, 2012.

He was born April 9, 1986, in Billings to James Michael Parker and Margaret Beth Parker, and had two brothers. He graduated from Colstrip High School in 2004.

Painting, acting and the Atlanta Falcons were among his passions.

Survivors include his father, James Parker; stepmother, Judy Parker; brothers, Mackenzie James Parker of Boston, Mass., and Joseph Edward Parker of Billings; and a stepbrother, Jesse Medearis of Dillon.

Visitation was Nov. 9 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. Services were Nov. 10 at Cremation & Funeral Gallery. Cremation followed the service.

Memorials may be made to Harvest Church, 1235 West Wicks Lane, Billings MT 59105; or Fred Nelson, c/o CLDI, P.O. Box 3381, Billings, MT 59103.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:12

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Robert William O’Sullivan

Robert O’Sullivan, 91, who worked many years for General Electric Supply Co., died Nov. 10, 2012.

He was born June 13, 1921, the third of six children born to an Irish immigrant and his Swedish bride. When he was 18, his father died of miner’s consumption, and he worked to support his mother and his younger siblings. He attended Judge Memorial High School in Salt Lake City and married Dorothe Cooper in 1950.

Mr. O’Sullivan worked at General Electric Supply Co. for 33 years. After he retired, he went back to work for Crescent Electric and Wesco Supply, driving all over the state to make sales. In his 80s, he worked at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary.

Mr. O’Sullivan was a fourth-degree Knight of Columbus, and was active in the Elks Lodge, Exchange Club and the Golden K Kiwanis.

He and his wife traveled extensively and had a family cabin near Fairfield, Idaho. They attended St. Vincent’s Supervised Exercise Program from 1989 until his death.

Survivors include his wife; a son, Tom; a daughter, Kelly; two granddaughters; a brother, Armond; and a sister, Dorothy Rino.

Services will be at 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16, at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary with visitation prior to the service. A reception will follow at St. Thomas Parish.

Memorials may be made to Judge Memorial Catholic High School, 650 S. 1100 E., Salt Lake City, UT 84102-3902.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:10

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Daniel Mercado

Danny Mercado, 72, a retired copy machine technician, died Nov. 5, 2012, after suffering from lung disease and congestive heart failure.

He was born to Thelma and Antone Mercado on June 12, 1940, in Honolulu, Hawaii. He joined the Air Force in December 1959 and served in Japan and Victorville, Calif., until April 1964, when he was honorably discharged.

He worked at Honolulu Mountain Bell from 1968-1970. He married Becky Hunt in 1970 but later divorced.

He worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture briefly before joining Xerox as a copy machine technician in Bakersfield, Calif., Rock Springs, Wyo., and Cody, Wyo. In 1975 he moved back to Honolulu as a single dad.

He attended community college and the University of Hawaii studying physics. He worked for Canon as a copy machine technician from 1981 until April 1995 when he moved back to Montana. Again he found a job as a Canon copy machine technician with Wickmans in Kalispell. He moved to Helena in 1996 and started work with Xerox.

He married Sharon Idleman-Holmquist in 1997. After being laid off in 2000, he was offered a job with Sharp the day he interviewed. He retired in 2003 and moved to Roundup, where they started a farm with horses, cows and poultry. He learned to use a chainsaw, swather and tractor to mow, rake and bale hay.

He had received care from the Veterans Administration.

Survivors include his wife; daughters, Cherie Mercado Wright and Laura Rhodes; daughters by marriage, Kimberly Warren, Karrie Eaton and Krista Crete; sisters, Anita and Delores; a brother, Ricky; and 12 grandchildren.

Visitation was Nov. 8-9. Services were Nov. 12 at Dahl Funeral Chapel. Burial was in Montana State Veterans Cemetery Fort Harrison.

Memorials may be made to Liberty House 3687 Veterans Drive, Fort Harrison, MT 59636, Attn: Kathleen Hanson.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:09

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