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MISSOULA — 1941-2017

Born to David Daniel Hickman and June Gill Hickman, in Anaconda, Dave's Montana roots were firmly planted in God's country. As an elementary student, Little Dave dodged moose on the way to school in Wise River, and later graduated from Butte High School. He traveled through this world with an adventurous heart, amazing creativity and strong, constant love for his family and friends. A childhood spent in Big Hole country with his grandparents was a walk down the halls of Montana history. With his grandad he carried supplies to a lonesome trapper's cabin, pungent with the winter's harvest, hauled fish in milk cans to stock backcountry lakes, and flew down the frozen river on a windy day, skates sharpened and coat outspread, skimming across black, cracking ice. This same spirit of adventure led to snowmobile racing, sprint car racing and the creation of a successful HVAC business.

As a young man, David R., as he was known to his friends, completed a sheet metal apprenticeship in Missoula and made lifelong friends with skilled tradesmen and contractors. While he helped Sally raise a family in Stevensville, he-coached little league, "vocally" supported his children's participation in sports and founded his own shop, Western Sheet Metal in Missoula. He enjoyed (worked his butt off) many years in the construction trade. He designed and built aluminum boats as a passion — an awesome achievement was the 45-foot cruiser he built by hand (with the support of many). Trips on the "Circe" included special weeks with the granddaughters; adventurous fishing trips, and many weeks with Sally, cruising in northwestern Washington, British Columbia and a wonderful summer in Alaska. As retirement solidified, his friendships grew especially close. His time on the links with golfing buddy, Norm, and fishing trips alongside Jim were some of his happiest times. Dave also treasured his coffee group and seldom missed a chance to "pick the number."

This "take charge" gentleman was an incredibly gifted talent with just about anything he set his mind to, especially come crunch time. His handyman and wood-working skills were amazing. With a subtle hint of a need, he'd be at the ready with a tape measure and a plan to help set things straight ... whether material or mental.

With great love, Dave leaves his wife of 56 years, Sally, their two children, Danny (Katie) and Monica, granddaughters Amber (Josh), Brittany (John), and Taryn (Jake) and five great-grandchildren who brought him much joy. Nieces, nephews and bonus great-grandchildren added to his blessings. All friends and family are invited to share a celebration of life on Sunday, Nov. 12, at 1 p.m., at Westside Lanes.

Condolences may be left for the family at

the life of: David R. Hickman
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