Wednesday, March 6, 2002; Leo C. Musberger, Benjamin Romero Rojas, Donna Jeanette Hilton, Robert S. Rock, Loretta Kay Gemar Habets, Lois Crerar McAllister, Robert 'Bob' Próper Skinner, James H. Ritson, William A. Reynolds, Alice Irene Huelskamp, James A. Moulds, Charles Thomas van der Ende, Lillian Fullerton Peterson, Bernard F. Prochaska, Barbara Lee 'Bobbie' Butler, Drew Allen Gates, Eugene Herman Clawson

2002-03-06T00:00:00Z Wednesday, March 6, 2002; Leo C. Musberger, Benjamin Romero Rojas, Donna Jeanette Hilton, Robert S. Rock, Loretta Kay Gemar Habets, Lois Crerar McAllister, Robert 'Bob' Próper Skinner, James H. Ritson, William A. Reynolds, Alice Irene Huelskamp, James A. Moulds, Charles Thomas van der Ende, Lillian Fullerton Peterson, Bernard F. Prochaska, Barbara Lee 'Bobbie' Butler, Drew Allen Gates, Eugene Herman Clawson missoulian.com
March 06, 2002 12:00 am

Leo C. Musberger

MISSOULA - Leo C. Musburger, 93, longtime Missoula resident, died Feb. 28, 2002, at the Odyssey Hospice in Tucson, Ariz. He was born Sept. 19, 1908.

In August 1998, over 100 people gathered at the Missoula Elks Club to celebrate the life of Leo Musburger. Leo said he would rather have a party he could enjoy than a funeral he couldn't. It was a great party for a man who loved his life in Montana, achieved much, and will be remembered fondly by many.

Leo's early years were spent in true pioneer fashion. His mother died when he was 4 years old. The homestead near Lodge Grass went bankrupt and in 1922 Leo's father loaded his second wife and two sons on a train and ended up in Gardiner. While their father worked as a road foreman in Yellowstone National Park, Leo and younger brother Cec attended school and worked summers in the park. The family moved again in 1927, this time to Elnora, Alberta, Canada, then back to Red Lodge to work in the hayfields and drive the home teams.

Leo graduated from Ashton, Idaho, High School in 1929 and entered Montana Normal College in Dillon on a full 4-H scholarship. He earned his board by washing dishes at Ma Campbell's boarding house. But football and other sports were his real interest in life.

In the fall of 1930 Leo secretly married Mary Wemple from Florence, who had recently graduated from Montana Normal. Because male students could not be secretly married, Leo was expelled just before graduation. He appealed his case to the chancellor of higher education in Helena and his charm won a reprieve so he could graduate in the summer of 1931.

That fall, he and Mary moved to Bannack to teach all eight grades. The schoolhouse was the first floor of the Masonic Temple. Leo got the job because the chairman of the school board was impressed with the way Leo handled a team of horses while haying during the day. The chairman thought this indicated Leo could handle rowdy students. Mary taught music, art, and grades one through four. Leo handled the older students and coached sports.

Leo Clyde Jr. was born in June 1933 and that fall Leo Sr. and Mary moved to Virginia City to teach in a real schoolhouse. Paid the lavish sum of $90 a month, Leo taught and Mary substituted. In September 1935, Mary gave birth to their second son, Robert Bartlett.

In 1937 Leo was elected the deputy clerk of the Madison County Court. Two years later he was elected county superintendent of schools and was re-elected in 1942. However, World War II halted his political career and Leo served as an aerologist mate in the Navy while stationed at the Oak Harbor Naval Air Station on Whidbey Island near Seattle.

After the war, Leo got back to Montana as quickly as he could. He returned to teaching and administration while completing his master's degree in education administration at the University of Montana during the summers. He served as principal at Ramsay and Columbia Falls before taking the superintendent's job in the Bonner school system. His marriage with Mary ended in 1953, though they remained friends until her death in 1984.

Leo served as principal and superintendent of the Bonner schools for 22 years. During his tenure a new building was constructed and the system made the transition into modern methods of elementary education. When he retired in 1974, the students and faculty presented him with a bike because they knew he wasn't going to just sit around.

For six years he traveled the state as a representative for Encyclopedia Britannica, visiting friends wherever he went. In 1975 he met Dr. Frances Hill, a neighbor who also enjoyed Leo's sport challenge: golf. From then on they were golfing and traveling companions, enjoying trips to Idaho, California, Hawaii, and Arizona to check out the best links and restaurants.

Leo was a lifelong member of the Montana Teachers Association, serving as the president of both the Virginia City and Madison County chapters. He was also active in the Elks. He was a past exalted ruler of the Virginia City Lodge and led the first ritualistic team from Montana in national competition. He served as the district deputy of Montana and was a past state president. At his 90th birthday party, he was presented with a plaque by the Elks honoring his lifetime of service to the organization.

Also active in Masonic circles, he was a past worthy master of the Blue Lodge and a member of Montana Lodge No. 1 in Virginia City, as well as a patron of the Eastern Star. A charter member of the Bonner Lions Club, he was honored as Lion of the Year in 1973-74.

Although Leo Jr. died in 1984, his two sons have married and Leo Sr. was a proud great-grandfather. Leo Jr.'s widow, Joan Rutherford, grandson Mark and wife Melissa, who are parents of Brooke, 4, and Blake, 1, and grandson Mike and wife Anna, parents of Erik and Felix, age 1, all live in the greater Seattle area. Younger son Robert, who lives in Houston with his wife Pat, was in Tucson with his father at the time of Leo's death. Leo had been visiting Frances, who moved to Arizona last summer.

In accordance with his wishes, there will be no funeral service for Leo Musburger. But if you want to do something to remember him, you could make a donation to the Leo C. Musburger Library Scholarship Fund at Bonner School, play a round of golf, volunteer some time at a school, or cheer on a team representing the University of Montana.

Benjamin Romero Rojas

THOMPSON FALLS - Benjamin Romero Rojas, 72, of Thompson Falls, died of cancer on Feb. 24, 2002, at home and with his children at his side.

He was born Dec. 29, 1929, in Scottsbluff, Neb., to Darlene and Benny Rojas. Benjamin was raised in Utah and later lived in Oregon. He served two tours in the U.S. Marine Corps and earned a Purple Heart during the Korean War.

He later moved to California, where he worked as a boilermaker for Emery Chemicals. He was a self-taught guitarist and talented artist whose first love was his family.

He is survived by his wife Mercedes Rojas of Lancaster, Calif.; sons Benny Rojas of Tehachapi, Calif., Rocky Rojas of Murrieta, Calif., John, Jason and Jonathan Rojas, all of Lancaster, and Joshua Rojas of Long Beach, Calif.; and daughters Dolly Wright of Lancaster and Paula Dykstra of Missoula.

At the family's request, a private service was held Feb. 25 at the Montana Cremation and Memorial Society in Missoula and his ashes were spread over Thompson Falls by his son-in-law Art Dykstra, who is a pilot.

Donna Jeanette Hilton

MISSOULA - Donna Jeanette Hilton, 65, of Missoula, passed away Saturday, March 2, at St. Patrick Hospital of natural causes.

Donna was born May 7, 1936, in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada, to Clarence Raymond and Myrtle Irene (Clemmens) Houseman.

Donna attended Flathead County High School in Kalispell. She was married to Lawrence E. "Bud" Hilton on June 4, 1955.

Donna's caring, understanding and loving, gentle ways will be greatly missed.

Survivors include her devoted and loving husband of 47 years, Bud; daughter Diane and her husband Russ James; sons Darren, Mark and Ron; granddaughter Desiree James; brother Ellis and his wife Rose Houseman; sisters, Evelyn and her husband Gleed Utley, Gail and her husband Art Palmer, and Ramona and her husband Eugene Corntassel; sisters-in-law, Laverne Lehmkuhl, Florence and her husband Lloyd Behling, Elnora James and Eileen Varner; and many nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at Sunset Memorial Funeral Home. Services will be 2 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home with Pastor Lorraine Andrusky officiating. Interment will follow at Sunset Memorial Cemetery. A reception will follow in the funeral home's community room.

Pallbearers will be Bud, Ron, Mark and Darren Hilton; Ellis Houseman; and Russ James.

The family suggests memorials may be made in Donna's name to the American Cancer Society, Missoula County Unit, P.O. Box 3914, Missoula, MT 59806.

Robert S. Rock

FLORENCE - Robert S. Rock, 70, passed away Sunday, March 3, 2002, at his home in Florence of natural causes.

Memorial services will be 1 p.m. Friday, March 8, at the Livingston, Malletta & Geraghty Funeral Home in Missoula.

A complete obituary will follow at a later date.

Loretta Kay Gemar Habets

LOLO - Loretta Kay Gemar Habets, 59, of Lolo, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Feb. 27, 2002. She died of natural causes. Loretta was very spiritual and had a very deep love for the Lord.

She was born Feb. 23, 1943, in Conrad to John Albert and Thallia Gemar. Raised in the Choteau-Conrad area, Loretta was educated in the small school of Agawam. She married her longtime boyfriend, Elmer E. Habets, and their marriage produced two children.

They spent most of their early years farming in the Valier-Conrad area. The family then moved to Anaconda and worked road construction. Following a short time in Bancroft, Idaho, the family settled in Florence.

At their home in Florence, Loretta was in her element as she loved her landscaping, flowers, waterfalls and beautiful rock gardens. She enjoyed many forms of art, including bronze sculpting, pen and ink drawings, and watercolors. She liked poetry and wrote poems for her family; some were actually published.

She was an extremely artistic person and we all enjoyed her work. We all display her work proudly. Her hand-drawn, painted Christmas lawn ornaments, when all lit up in the front yard, were a sight to behold. She was also a great cook, which yielded her endeavor into starting her own barbecue sauce business.

Loretta is survived by her two children, Twila Habets-Mann and son-in-law Christopher Mann of Florence and Lane Habets and daughter-in-law Brandie Habets of Florence; four grandchildren, Whitney Mann, 11; Casey Mann, 6; Kaylie Habets, 5; and Trevor Habets, 8 months; and her ex-husband Elmer Habets. She also is survived by her two sisters, Louella Corrigan and brother-in-law John Corrigan of Salem, Ore., and Lois Harris of Anaconda; several aunts and uncles; and nieces and nephews, who were very special to her, including Rhonda Struble, Ronny Parkhill, Robin Schmidt, Sheri Corrigan, Kerri Jo Corrigan and Brian Harris.

She loved her family very much and we all love and miss her so very much. In her own words, we shall all meet one day on that beautiful shore and be together forever.

A memorial service will be 1 p.m. Friday, March 8, at the Lolo Community Church.

Arrangements and cremation are by Sunset Memorial Funeral Home in Missoula.

Robert 'Bob' Próper Skinner

WHITEFISH - Robert "Bob" Próper Skinner, 80, passed away on Monday, March 4, 2002, at North Valley Hospital.

He was born July 14, 1921, in Seattle to Robert F. and Verne (Próper) Skinner.

His parents and brother Richard preceded him in death.

Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Lou Skinner of Whitefish; several nieces and nephews; and his cousin Skip Skinner of Port Townsend, Wash.

Visitation will be noon-6 p.m. Thursday at Johnson Mortuary in Kalispell.

Graveside services will be 11 a.m. Friday at Conrad Memorial Cemetery in Kalispell followed by a memorial service at noon at the First Presbyterian Church in Whitefish.

The family suggests memorials to the First Presbyterian Church, 301 Central Ave., Whitefish, MT 59937.

James H. Ritson

DARBY - James H. Ritson, 78, passed away Sunday, March 3, at his residence south of Darby.

He was born June 30, 1923, in Cleveland to the late James and Minnie Ritson. He served in the Navy during World War II. While in the Navy, he was a boxing champion in the lightweight class.

He was a transmission specialist in California for 40 years, moving to the Bitterroot in 1997.

Survivors include his children, Sandra Williams of Minnesota, James Ritson and Tim Ritson, both of California, and Candy (Derry) Kempf of Darby; seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

A celebration of his life service will be held 4 p.m. Sunday, March 10, at the Daly-Leach Chapel Community Room in Hamilton. Private family urn placement will take place at a later date.

In lieu of flowers the family suggests memorials to the American Cancer Society or to the Marcus Daly Hospice of the Bitterroot, 1200 Westwood Drive, Hamilton, MT 59840.

Lois Crerar McAllister

SUFFOLK, Va. - Lois Crerar McAllister passed away at her Eclipse home in Suffolk on Feb. 10, 2002, after an extended illness.

Lois was born Feb. 3, 1922, to George and Essie Wilcox Crerar in Missoula, where she spent her first 20 years.

At the breakout of World War II, she moved to Seattle to find work and eventually to join the U.S. Coast Guard. At that time she met and married Richard McAllister, who was serving in the U.S. Navy.

Lois was a WWII veteran, having served with the Coast Guard. She retired after 30 years of civil service with the 5th District U.S. Coast Guard.

She is survived by her daughters, Sharon M. Steinkamp and husband Richard of Virginia Beach, Va., and Karla M. Smith and husband Jimmy of Suffolk; sons, Jonathon E. McAllister and wife Kate of Cockeysville, Md., and Guy M. McAllister and wife Lisa of Tampa, Fla.; and daughter-in-law Lynda McAllister of Woodbridge, Va.

Lois was preceded in death by her son Richard A. McAllister, her parents and her brother Don E. Crerar.

Left to cherish her memory are her brother Dave Cresar, his wife Hazel and family; and her sister Edris Powell and family of Missoula.

Lois was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Missoula during her youth and became an active member of Ebenezer United Methodist Church in Crittenden, Va.

After finding herself as a single parent to raise five children and several battles with unpredictable health problems, she exemplified courage in solving them. This lady was above and beyond.

A memorial service was held Feb. 14.

William A. Reynolds

MISSOULA - William A. Reynolds, 82, of Missoula, passed away on Tuesday, March 5, 2002, at Hillside Manor.

He was born March 21, 1919, in Upper Falls, Md., the son of Lillian and William A. Reynolds.

His family includes his wife Betty of the family home; daughter Barbara Ann Cohen and her husband Jerry of North Palm Beach, Fla.; sister Brice Graham of Salisbury, Md.; and three great-grandchildren, Jarrod, Rhiannon and Caitlynn Hudson of Huachuca City, Ariz.

Cremation is under the care of Garden City Funeral Home and Crematory.

Alice Irene Huelskamp

PLAINS - Alice Irene Huelskamp, 99, passed away Sunday, March 3, 2002, at the Clark Fork Valley Nursing Home in Plains.

She was born in Monroe, S.D., on Aug. 31, 1902, to Anton and Jane Benson.

On Nov. 11, 1924, she married Eugene Huelskamp. They lived in New Ulm, Minn., until 1950 when they moved to Bismarck, N.D.

Irene was employed by the state auditor's office in Bismarck until she retired. In 1990, she came to Paradise to live with her daughter, Rhoda Munsch, and be near her other daughter, Susan Flory.

Irene was a lifetime member of Catholic Daughters of America. She also volunteered at the hospital auxiliary at St. Alexis Hospital in Bismarck. She loved playing bridge, dancing, quilting and playing the organ.

Irene is survived by her daughters and their husbands, Rhoda and Leon Munsch of Paradise and Susan and Jim Flory of Plains. She has seven grandchildren, Bruce and Zara Munsch, Missoula; Jane and Terry Degen, Belgrade; Errol and Jami Munsch, Wichita, Kan.; Damon Munsch, Paradise; Laura Beller, Moffit, N.D.; Cindy and John Mielke, Plains; and Gary and Sandra Lammert, Eaton, Colo.; brother, Arthur Benson, Bismarck; 17 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

Irene was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Eugene; her parents; and two brothers, Leroy and Charles Benson.

Thank you God for letting us have her for so many years.

A memorial service will be 10 a.m. Saturday, March 16, at St. James Catholic Church in Plains.

Arrangements are under the care of Garden City Funeral Home and Crematory in Missoula.

James A. Moulds

KALISPELL - James A. Moulds, 64, passed away on Monday, March 4, 2002, at Kalispell Regional Medical Center.

Jim was born Aug. 3, 1937, in Aberdeen, S.D., to Frank A. and Louise Miller Moulds.

Visitation will be 6:30-9 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at Buffalo Hill Funeral Home.

Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Friday, March 8, at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church with the Rev. Darold Reiner officiating. Burial will follow at Glacier Memorial Gardens.

Charles Thomas van der Ende

SEATTLE - Charles Thomas van der Ende was born Dec. 9, 1921, in Bozeman to Tjette Entjes and Jessie Anna White van der Ende. He was the third of 10 children, of whom five are still living.

He attended grade school and high school in Lonepine, and received his GED while in the service.

In 1938 he joined the U.S. Army at age 18. As a member of the 3rd Infantry, 30th Division, Company B, 3rd Army, he saw action in Africa, Sicily, Italy, France and Germany. He was one of three men in his company of 200 who survived to fight to the end of World War II. All the rest of his men had either been killed, wounded or hospitalized with battle fatigue.

He was mustered out as a staff sergeant in August 1945 and found employment in the Montana woods. In 1949 he re-enlisted, and spent three years in Korea as a tank mechanic. His decorations during his tours of duty included the Distinguished Service Cross, two Bronze Stars, two Silver Stars, three Purple Hearts, and the French Croix do Guerre.

In 1953 he married Violet Williams of Kalispell. To this union one son, Tom, was born.

In 1958 he moved to Alaska, where he lost a leg in a logging accident. After a year at the Veterans Hospital in Portland, he returned to Alaska to work as a mechanic and later as a commercial fisherman, which was his first love.

As he aged he developed multiple health problems. He made his home in Point Baker, Alaska, until his death at the Veterans Hospital in Seattle on Feb. 7, 2002.

Family members include his son Tom van der Ende of Odessa, Wash.; brother Entje van der Ende of Sprague, Wash.; sisters Ruth Edwards of Careywood, Idaho, Nancy Berry of Athol, Idaho, Irene Ashcraft of Anchorage, Alaska, and Becky Gustavsen of Lacombe, Alberta, Canada; several brothers-in-law; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Lillian Fullerton Peterson

HAMILTON - Lillian Fullerton Peterson, 86, of Hamilton, passed away Sunday, March 3, 2002, at the Discovery Care Centre.

Born April 18, 1915, in Hamilton to the late Harvey and Ivy Solberger Fullerton, she was raised and educated in Hamilton. She attended Normal College in Cheney, Wash., and the University of Montana.

In 1930 she married Jack Franke; they later were divorced. She married Ernest Peterson in the early 1950s.

She enjoyed riding horses with Margaret Bessenyey.

Survivors include her daughter Gail and husband Don Korman of Lolo; grandson Wade Korman of Seattle; sisters Isabele and husband Marlin Buxton of Missoula and Effie Crerar of Chehalis, Wash.; sister-in-law Betty Fullerton of Oregon; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her brothers Edward and William Fullerton.

A funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Friday, March 8, at the Daly-Leach Chapel in Hamilton with Pastor Alvin House officiating. Interment will follow at Riverview Cemetery in Hamilton.

The family suggests memorials to a charity of the donor's choice.

Bernard F. Prochaska

POLSON - Bernard F. Prochaska, 84, of Polson, passed away at his daughter's home in Polson on March 4, 2002, from natural causes.

He was preceded in death by his parents and granddaughter Randi Rae Prochaska.

Bernard is survived by his wife Loretta and daughter Jacque Dolberry, both of Polson; son Cory Prochaska of Yuma, Ariz.; four grandchildren, Cory and Shay Dolberry of Oregon and Mark and Danya Prochaska of Yuma; and great-grandson John Crandall of Oregon.

A funeral service will be 10:30 a.m. Friday, March 8, at Grogan Funeral Home with the Rev. Russ Barber officiating. Interment will follow at Lakeview Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to Salish Kootenai College Nursing Scholarships, c/o P.O. Box 117, Pablo, MT 59855.

Barbara Lee 'Bobbie' Butler

BUTTE - Our beloved mother, Barbara Lee "Bobbie" Butler, passed away Tuesday morning, March 5, at her home in Butte. She gave a courageous fight for over six years to be independent and be at home with her illness. During this time, she took care of her 90-year-old mother for five years.

Born Barbara Lee Kerzenmacher on July 2, 1930, at West Entrance Cabins in West Yellowstone to Walter and Virginia Kerzenmacher, she was raised in Grayling, Mont. Barbara went to grade school in West Yellowstone and attended high school in Bozeman.

On July 26, 1947, she married Carroll P. Butler in Butte and they spent 40 years together. They traveled with his job throughout Montana, settling in Butte in 1952.

She was active in the PTA, was a Cub Scout and Boy Scout den mother, led a troop of Girl Scouts and was past worthy matron of Ruth Chapter No. 2, Order of the Eastern Star. She also belonged to the Daughters of the Nile and the White Shrine of Jerusalem. Some of her hobbies included camping, fishing, rock collecting, crafts and spending time with her family.

Barbara was a dedicated daughter, sister, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She lost her husband in 1987 and following his death, she stayed busy. She started her working career at age 57 with her first job outside her home, working at McDonald's. She also was preceded in death by her father in 1988. It was then she became caretaker of her mother, who passed away in 2000. Her sister Durl Spindler passed away in 1995.

Surviving are her children: Ron and Joan Butler of Missoula, Cliff and Connie Walter of Great Falls and Scott Butler of Butte. Grandchildren include Brittany and Chris Garrison; Craig and Korrie Butler; Jamie Butler; Shane, Shandell and Colton Walter; and Kelly and Allison Butler. Great-grandsons are Kainen, Keegan and Karsen Butler. She also is survived by her brothers-in-law, John Spindler and Chuck Williams; sisters and brothers-in-law, Barb and Bob Bakken and Merc and Will Reinhard; and several nieces and nephews.

Friends may call at the Wayrynen-Richards Funeral Home beginning Thursday after 4 p.m. Star services will be held Thursday evening.

Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Friday at the funeral home with Bill Tarrant officiating. Cremation will follow the services. A reception will be held in the Wayrynen-Richards Community Center immediately following the service.

Drew Allen Gates

HOT SPRINGS - Drew Allen Gates, 14, of Hot Springs, died from injuries sustained as a passenger in a vehicle accident at Lonepine on Friday, March 1, 2002.

He was born Sept. 1, 1987, at South Lake Tahoe, Calif., and was attending school in Hot Springs.

He is survived by his parents, Hank and Carmen Carr of Hot Springs and Glen Gates of New Mexico; sister Alison Gates of Hot Springs, three brothers, Daniel Gates of Thompson Falls, Dylan Greenwood of Arkansas and Arron Harper Gates of Barstow, Calif.; great-grandmother Emilia Gonzales of San Bernardino, Calif.; grandparents, James and Gloria Salsberry of Hot Springs, Jerry and Ginny Gates of Arkansas and Bessie Gates of Oklahoma; and numerous aunts, uncles and other relatives.

Visitation and services, with poems and remembrances of Drew by his family and friends, will be 2 p.m. Friday at Lonepine Hall. Cremation will take place following the services.

Arrangements are under the direction of Grogan Funeral Home and Crematory in Polson.

Eugene Herman Clawson

MISSOULA - Eugene Herman Clawson, 81, of Missoula, passed away on Sunday, March 3, 2002, at St. Patrick Hospital after a lengthy struggle with emphysema.

Gene was born April 17, 1920, in Missoula, to George M. Clawson and Hulda Johnson Clawson.

He attended Willard Grade School, Missoula County High School and graduated from the University of Montana with a degree in business, earning nine varsity letters - three in football, three in basketball and three in track. At that time the University of Montana was a member of the Pacific Coast Conference, which included USC, UCLA, Oregon, Oregon State, Washington, Washington State, Idaho and Montana. He was an all-conference selection in football and track, and a place-winner in the NCAA Track and Field Meet in the discus two years in a row.

World War II interrupted his college education when, as a first lieutenant, he proudly served his country in the 10th Mountain Division in Italy. During his tour of duty he sustained machine gun injuries. For his valor he received the Bronze Star, Silver Star and Purple Heart, and was honorably discharged from the military in 1946.

On April 25, 1943, he married Vivian Elaine Olson in the First Presbyterian Church in Missoula. They were married for 49 years at the time of her death. He started Treasure State Manufacturing in 1949, which later incorporated into Clawson Manufacturing in 1967.

After retirement Gene avidly pursued his outdoor interests of golf, hunting, fishing and trapshooting, for which he won many awards. His greatest joys were family outings, the camaraderie he experienced with his many friends, frequent fishing expeditions to Idaho and Alaska, and weekends spent at Placid Lake. During his lifetime he hunted extensively in Montana, Idaho, British Columbia and Alaska, giving his children and grandchildren lasting memories of times spent with Grandpa.

He was a member of Sigma Nu social fraternity, was a member and past Master of Harmony Lodge No. 49 AF and AM, a member of the Scottish Rite, the Shrine, Midget Auto Patrol and Royal Order of Jesters. He was a past president of the Western Montana Fish and Game Association and was chairman of the Migratory Bird Committee that was instrumental in getting western Montana into the Pacific Flyway under the Pacific Flyway waterfowl regulations. He was president and secretary-treasurer of the Missoula Trap and Skeet Club for many years. Active in the Republican Party, he served as chairman of the Missoula County Republican Party and was a precinct committeeman, serving in that capacity at the time of his death.

Eugene was preceded in death by his parents; one sister, Irene Brown; and his wife Vivian.

Survivors include his daughter, Sharon Clawson of Mrytle Creek, Ore.; his two sons, Gene Clawson Jr. and wife, Sharlene, and James Clawson and wife, Diane, all of Missoula; six grandchildren, Bill Clawson and wife, Ami, of Missoula; Jamie Clawson Denham and husband, Jonathan, of Ferndale, Wash.; Cheryl Clawson of Missoula; Nick Clawson and wife, Trish, of Billings; Brad Clawson and wife, Krista, of Alberton; and James Clawson of Myrtle Creek, Ore.; 11 great-grandchildren; one sister, Mildred Wersland of Missoula; and one brother, Dale Clawson of Missoula; plus several nieces and nephews.

He was loved and respected by many and will be deeply missed.

Visitation will be 5-8 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at Garden City Funeral Home, where funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Friday. The Rev. Jack Oates will officiate. Burial will follow at Missoula City Cemetery.

Pallbearers will be Gene Clawson Jr., Jim Clawson, Bill Clawson, Nick Clawson, Brad Clawson and James Clawson. Honorary pallbearers include Dale Clawson, Ken Wersland, Fred Brauer, Ken Wyckman, Jake Chaussee and Pat McDonald.

The family suggests memorials in Gene's name be made to Shriners Childrens Hospital, N. 820 Summit Blvd., Spokane, WA 99201.

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