Obituaries

Thomas R. Girvin 89 of Lewistown died Wednesday morning, February 14th, 2018 in the Central Montana Medical Center of natural causes.  He was born January 1, 1929 in Indianapolis IN the son of Thomas O. and Irene F. Girvin.  He met the love of his life Ruth A. Rohner and married her September 13, 1949 and they raised 5 children.   He served in the United States Marine Corp being stationed in Guam and Quantico, VA.  Tom was the oldest of 8 siblings and took on the responsibility of raising them along with raising his own children.  Being the outgoing and gregarious man that he was, he always said that laughter was the best medicine.  His interests were gardening, which he took great pride in having the best flowers surrounding his houses; fishing in streams, rivers, lakes and the Pacific Ocean and hunting.    

Tom was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Lewistown and served as a deacon for several years.  He was also very active in various organizations whether living in California or living here in Lewistown.  Tom was always taking the time to meet new friends and keeping in touch with them.  His laughter and love for everyone was infectious.  His life started out living in Indianapolis but he didn’t stay there for long.  He moved to Evansville, IN and then to Chippewa Creek near Grass Range, MT and then to Lewistown, MT until 1966 when he moved the family to Goleta, CA working at the University of California at Santa Barbara as a carpenter.  He returned to Lewistown in the summer of 1977 with his wife and became the Judge.  One of his duties was marrying couples of which he did for 100+ couples.  His dedication and his love for his wife of 68 years was evident to all those who met him  For all those who have known him his life was filled with so much more than can be expressed in words.  His humor and love will forever be missed. 

Tom was a member of the Elks Lodge, Moose Lodge, Friendship Lodge #37 A.F. & A.M., Al Be Doo Shrine, Eastern Star of Grass Range, Disabled American Veterans, American Legion Post #16, Snowy Mountain Muzzleloaders and Past President CB Club in Santa Barbara, CA.

He is survived by his wife of 68 years Ruth; daughter Lyndia Sue Smitman; son Thomas Jr. all of Lewistown; sons Leslie A of Los Los Osos, CA and Timothy A. of Nipomo, CA; brother Lamont of Fairfield, OH; sister Mary Lou Wagner of Lewistown; 9 grandchildren, 11 great grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death one son Michael, one granddaughter, two brothers, four sisters and his parents.

Memorial Services for Thomas R. Girvin will be Saturday, March 24th, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the First Presbyterian Church.  Cremation has taken place at his request.  The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Friends are asked to make memorials to the Shrine Crippled Children Transportation Trust Fund or the charity of their choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home.  Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

 

 

Norman Leroy Onstad 92, passed away February 9th 2018 at home in Lewistown Montana with some of his family by his side. He called New London Minnesota home for more than 40 years. He did not leave New London until he had no memory of home.  Norman was born January
4th 1926 to Alexander and Hilda (Warass) Turner in Hallock MN.  In 1928 Hilda was admitted to Fergus Falls hospital. Alexander was unable to care for all his children, he “borrowed” the 5 youngest to friends and neighbors. Norman went to live with Andrew and Della Onstad. Soon after, Della was also admitted to the Fergus Falls Hospital, Norman was then raised by Andrew’s in laws Muns Ronhovde and 3 of his daughters, he stayed there graduating from Barrett High School in 1943. He then joined the US Navy. Following his discharge, he moved to Benson Minnesota where he met, then married Gerda Thedora Olson in 1947.  Norman enlisted in 1948 in the US Air Force, retiring in 1965.  Norman was a Veteran with just over 20 years. He was in many places during his years of service, the South Pacific, Pakistan, Alaska,
Texas, New York, Wisconsin and Nevada.

They had 9 children and lived in several states while Norman served his country. In 1966 the family settled in New London. Norman worked at
the State hospital for more than 20 years, he owned and ran Onstad’s Auto and worked various jobs in the area.  He was great at fixing things and was always willing to lend a hand.  He took perfect care of his lawn and home.  He was a terrific and proud grandfather, many of them grew up iservice and coffee Forumn the area and spent many hours on Birch Street.

Norman was an active member of Peace Lutheran Church, he especially enjoyed the music at the celebration service and the Coffee Forum.
He was a lifetime member of the VFW, active in the Spicer American Legion marching in many parades and active in the color guard. Norman enjoyed fishing, shaking dice and coffee with family and friends. Norman was a very kind man and always had a joke or a few wise words in Norwegian. He also enjoyed writing editorials in the paper, crossword puzzles. He lived a good long life and will be missed by many.

Norman is survived by his sons Dean (Sue) of Lewistown MT, Bill (Lia) of Great Falls MT, Darell (Patsy) of New London MN; daughters Darla
Larson of Lewistown MT, Brenda Allen of Westfield IN, Beth (James) Taylor  of New London MN, Tammy (Melissa) Renee of Cokato MN, Kim Brideau of New London MN and daughters in law Renee Onstad of New London MN and special cousin Audrey Ronhovde of Barrett MN; 19 grandchildren, numerous great grandchildren and great great grandchildren.

Norman was preceded in death by his wife Gerda, his parents, brother Harry, sisters Sophie, Clara, Enid, Hazel, Annadale, Beth and
Marybelle, eldest son Randy, son in law Bill Allen, grandchildren Travis Fellers, Chris Nelson and great granddaughter Linda Allen.

Services for Norman Onstad will be at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 7th, 2018  at Peace Lutheran Church in New London, followed by lunch and coffee.  There will also be a gathering in honor of Norman for family and friends at his home in Lewistown.   The family would like memorials to Hospice of Central Montana, 408 Wendall Ave, Lewistown MT 59457  Memorials can also be dropped off  Cloyd Funeral home in Lewistown MT.  Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

John Lewis “Jack” Miller 80 of Judith Gap passed away February 7, 2018 at Central Montana Medical Center after a valiant and courageous battle against cancer. Jack was born February 1, 1938 the son of John and Daisy (Lilley) Miller, in Lewistown, the eldest of 6 children. Jack spent his entire 80 years in Central Montana, where he was known for his kindness, leadership and abilities to repair any item that showed up on his doorstep.  Jack was a devoted family man, marrying his high school sweetheart Eleanor Arneson, June 22, 1957, together they raised a family of five boys.  

Jack was a leader in Boy Scouts for over 30 years and leader in Civil Air patrol for 18 years, enjoying working with young people and helping them to achieve their goals was always important to him. He was also active in City Council, Volunteer Fire Department and a lifetime member of the Catholic Church. 

Jack was truly a jack of all trades, always available to help whom ever needed a repair done, with his amazing ability to figure out the problem and the large inventory of a little of this and a lot of that, we all turned to him for help! From owning his own business, to working for others Jack always made sure to keep everything working. 

 

Jack is survived by his wife Eleanor of Judith Gap; sons Marvin of, Tucson, AZ Neal (Lori) of Lake Stevens, WA, Leon (Delane) of Yakima, WA and Mike (Sandy) of Lewistown; brothers Dave and Tony (Susan) all of Judith Gap, MT; sister Mary Barner of Munden, KS; 7 grandchildren, Ben, Dillon, Gavin, Alyssa, Michael, Christina and Nicky and numerous nieces and nephews.  

He is preceded in death by his beloved son Don, his parents, brothers Frank (Susan) and Bernard (Anna), daughter in law Tina, sister in law Margaret, brother in law Creighton.  

A memorial service for Jack Miller is pending, when the weather breaks in Judith Gap, MT.  The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.  Jack would appreciate this as he was a devoted weather watcher for the National Weather Service, always the first up in the morning to check the Judith Gap temperature and precipitation.  

Jack will be missed by his family, his community and his friends; the time that he graced this earth was certainly well marked with his creativity and strength of character. 

Friends are asked to make memorials to Judith Gap Fire Dept.  Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

 

John R. Foster 78 of Lewistown passed away early Wednesday morning, February 7th, 2018 in the Central Montana Health and Rehab Center of pulmonary fibrosis.  He was born December 16, 1939 in Lewistown the son of John Howard and Eileen Agnes (Simonfy) Foster.  His parents divorced when he was four years old and he went to live with his mother and his maternal grandmother Elisabeth Simonfy.  His mother later became disabled due to rheumatoid arthritis and he was raised by his grandmother.  He attended schools in Lewistown, Garfield Elementary and Fergus High School graduating in 1958.  He worked at a meat market during his high school years.  He later attended the University of Montana in Missoula where he majored in sociology.  As he was 100 percent self-support, he spent 13 years working his way through 4 years of college.  He worked primarily as an appliance salesman to earn enough money to continue at the university.  John became a member of the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity at the university and he credits this fraternity with encouraging and helping him to continue attending and finishing college.

On February 14, 1969 he was united in marriage to Eloise Johnson, of Onalaska Wisconsin, in Minneapolis, MN.  To this union two children were born, Susan Louise Foster in 1971 and Russell John Foster in 1974.  They later divorced.

John was appointed by Honorable Leroy L. McKinnon, 10th Judicial District court judge, to be the juvenile probation officer serving the 10th Judicial District, composed of Fergus, Judith Basin and Petroleum counties.  He worked there for 10 years before choosing to start a private Counseling practice in Lewistown.  John was a Licensed Councilor (LCPC), License #14 in the State of Montana and was the historian for Fergus, Judith Basin and Petroleum Counties, writing numerous articles in a variety of venues including the News Argus.  For well over 30 years, John wrote Christmas articles for the News Argus Christmas Edition and he published a book on James Fergus.  John retired in 2002 but continued as the county historian and counseled a few patients.

On February 21, 1997 John was united in marriage to Susan Schwarz in Coeur d’Alene, ID.

John continued to make his home in Lewistown with Sue until the time of his death.

He is survived by his wife Sue; one son Russell J. of Corvallis, MT; one daughter Susan (Lee) Taisarsky of Denver, CO; one half brother Raymond A. Foster of Reno, NV; two grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Memorial Services for John R Foster will be held in April, at his request cremation has taken place.  The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Friends are asked to make memorials to the Central Montana Historical Museum, Lewistown Genealogy section of Lewistown Library or the charity of their choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home.  Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

 

     Mary J. (Kuhry) Pekkala, 93 of Grass Range went to the arms of her soulmate Carl on Saturday morning, January 27th, 2018 at her home. She was born April 26, 1924 in the homestead house of Alfred and Laura (Markwardt) Kuhry. A tomboy at heart, she was happier outside with her dad than inside doing dishes. She was in charge of watching the turkeys, working the garden, riding after the milk cows and helping milk them. She graduated from Grass Range High School in 1942. During WWII she went to work in Lewistown. One night at the roller rink, a handsome service man winked and changed her life forever. A love story began and for the next 74 years, they were rarely apart. After their marriage in Mountain Home Idaho on January 8th, 1944, the newlyweds moved around for a while. Eventually buying 35 acres near Spring Creek outside of Lewistown. With a dream of supporting a family, a few milk cows and lots of hard work, Pine Hill dairy was born. A family operation all 9 children joined in the fun.

     Our mom was an amazing woman of her time. She’d cook three meals a day, bake bread, canned hundreds of quarts of produce each year, raised a garden, helped operate the dairy and sewed our clothes at night. Mom always had music playing, the tunes weaving a song of love in our home. She adored flowers, growing gladiolas and petunias and arranged lovely bouquets. She always made our home a beautiful sanctuary.

     In 1974, they moved to Mary’s dad’s ranch at Grass Range. They raised sheep and cattle until 1977. After they built their retirement home on the ranch, she attended her bees, helped with “dumb” lambs and gardened till age 91. We’re sure she’s planning a garden right now!

     She leaves behind children Linda (John) Birkeland of Billings, MT, Keith (Anna) Pekkala of Phoenix, AZ, Kathy Lindh of Tucson, AZ, Mike Pekkala of Emigrant, MT, Christine Mueller of San Rafael, CA, Teresa (Herb) Hastings of Helena MT, Karen (Mark) Matovich of Grass Range, MT, Kim (Jim) DeArman Tulsa, OK; numerous grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

   Mary was preceded in death by her husband Carl in April of 2017, her parents, four siblings, two sons Daniel and Mark and grandson Christopher Birkeland.
     The family would like you to join in the celebration of Mary’s life on Saturday February 10th, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. in the Grass Range United Methodist Church with committal to be in the Grass Range Cemetery. Cloyd funeral home is assisting the family.

     Friends are asked to make memorials to Hospice of Central Montana, Grass Range Ambulance, the Grass Range United Methodist Church or the charity of their choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home. Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

Mary A. (Kottas) Butler ,85, of Lewistown, died Saturday morning, January 27th, 2018 in the Central Montana Nursing Rehab Center of natural causes, with her family by her side. She was born May 22, 1932 in Lewistown the daughter of Frank L. and Sylvia M. (Hoge) Kottas. She went to school in Denton up until the time her folks purchased land East of Lewistown on the divide. Mary then attended school in Lewistown graduating from St. Leo’s High School in 1950. She worked several places in her younger days, with the most memorable at the Georgeanne Theater, which is now the Cloyd Funeral Home. She had the pleasure of selling the first ticket to the Mayor at the grand opening. She also enjoyed working the local election precinct. She was united in marriage to Duane T. (Buck) Butler on June 11, 1951 in Lewistown, while he was in the Army. They made their home in California while he finished his time in the Army. Following his discharge, they returned to Lewistown and ranched on the north end of the North Moccasin Mountains, working and raising their family of three sons that still farm and ranch in the same area.

In 2000 she and Buck retired and moved to Lewistown. She enjoyed quilting, painting, puzzles, playing cards with family and friends, BBQ’s and always had plenty extra for neighbors and friends that would stop in.

She is survived by sons Gary (Peggy) of Lewistown, Billy (Natalie) and Tommy (Karla) both of Hilger; three grandchildren Garrett (Krischelle), Dawn (Ty) Zackus and Brandy (Joel) Barber; four great grandchildren Chelsea, Laurel, Salena and Mercedez and several nieces and nephews; as well as brother Gene (Pattie) Kottas in Washington and sister-in-law Betty Butler of Billings, MT.

She was preceded in death by her husband in September of 2017, her parents, and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.

Private family services for Mary A. Butler will be held at a later date. The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Friends are asked to make memorials to Hospice of Central Montana, Fergus County Council on Aging Meals on Wheels program or the charity of their choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home. Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

Phyllis J. Cloyd, age 89 of Lewistown, MT passed away peacefully on Monday morning, January 22nd, 2018 in Pinson Tennessee of natural causes.  She was born June 19, 1928 in Bozeman, Montana the daughter of Peter J. and Mae I. (Crouse) Barrett. She received her schooling in Bozeman graduating from High School in 1946. She worked in Bozeman and on February 21, 1947 she was united in marriage to Jerry W. Cloyd in Bozeman, MT. They lived in Los Angeles, CA and Jerry attended the California College of Mortuary Science. Following his graduation, they moved to Missoula, MT, they moved to Sidney, MT in the late 1940’s operating the Cloyd-Gorder Funeral Home until moving to Bozeman in 1953. She worked in Bozeman as a sales clerk in a clothing store. They moved to Lewistown in 1961 to open the Cloyd Funeral Home. She worked for many years for Dr. Jack Payne as his optometric assistant. They made their home in Lewistown until Jerry’s death in 2015 when she moved to Pinson to live with her son and daughter-in-law.

Phyllis was active in Eastern Star and Rainbow in Lewistown and served many years as an election judge for Fergus County.

She was well known for her candy making, she would make candy for many friends and relatives for the holidays, she also enjoyed many crafts.

She is survived by son Rick (Betty) of Pinson, TN; one granddaughter Stacey VanKuiken of Lewistown, MT, one grandson Chris (Erin) Cloyd of Pinson, TN; two great grandsons and two great great grandchildren.

In addition to Jerry, Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents, two brothers and four sisters.

Funeral Services for Phyllis J. Cloyd will be Wednesday January 31st, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Cloyd Chapel with interment to follow in the Lewistown City Cemetery. The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Friends are asked to make memorials to Hospice of Central Montana or the charity of their choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home. Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com

 James W Sauby, 75, passed away at St Vincent Healthcare in Billings on Tuesday, December 19th, 2017.  Jim was born in Shelby, MT on June 25th, 1942 the son of Warren and Dolores (Thennis) Sauby.  He spent much of his life working the family farm in Oilmont, MT learning the trades of farming, mechanics, oil production and numerous ways of tormenting his siblings before leaving to join the US Air National Guard, and dedicating 12 years to its’ service.  Jim was always happy when he was around his friends and family; whether it was fly fishing, camping in Glacier Park, bow hunting, playing on old John Deere tractors or just visiting with the hundreds of people he came to know from his years as a traveling sales representative.  Jim was always the one to tell the first joke, to share a story or offer words of wisdom.  He surrounded himself with good people and made sure he was always helpful and available to them whenever they needed him.  Jim was a youthful spirit right until he left us, his charisma, his humor and his honest character are the legacies he leaves with each of us.  Anyone who knew Jim, has many a good story and many fond memories to share.

He is survived by his wife Barbara of Lewistown; son Chris (Mary-Ann) and grandsons Evan and Ryan, and Son Josh; sisters Anita, JoAnn and Lucille; several nieces and nephews. 

Jim was preceded by his parents Warren and Delores and his brother Wilfred (Willie).

A memorial service for Jim Sauby will Saturday, February 10th, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Zion Lutheran Church in Lewistown.  The Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family.

In Lieu of gifts, donations to St Jude Children's Hospital or a charity of choice and they may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home.  Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com.

“He leaves behind friends and memories that span a wide range of life.”