Char-Koosta News

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For the Record...

July 2007 Obituaries

Johnny R. Harden
ST. IGNATIUS — Johnny R. Harden passed away on July 15, 2007.

John was born in Columbus GA on April 18, 1920 and joined the US Army in 1939 at Ft Benning, GA. In early 1940, John was selected as one of the 48 “Original Airborne Test Platoon,” the forerunners of the soon to be Army Airborne. John made 38 jumps in 1940, and later went on to Panama, Australia and finally returning to Ft. Benning as a parachute rigger trainer. He later switched over to the United States Air Force, where he became a parachute rigger. John served in Japan, Texas, and S. Dakota, finally retiring from the USAF at the rank of technical sergeant in 1960 and moved to Florida. John went to work for the City of Cocoa Water Department in 1960. He retired from there in 1975 as head of the meter Dept.

He moved to Montana in 2005 where he would say, “If I can see snow, I’m too far north”.

John will be missed by all those who knew him and his easygoing, never complain, can-I-help attitude.

John is survived by a daughter Jeanie L Storrer, her husband George of Port St John, Florida, “son in law” Carl (Chris) Christensen Jr. of St. Ignatius, MT; long time friend Mabel Brashear of Merritt Island, FL; Grandsons Carl H Christensen III, his fiancée Brenda Finkbeiner of Sparta, MI and Wesley R Christensen, his wife Cristal of Norwich, CT; grandchildren; Gabrielle of Orlando FL; Kim and Essence Christensen of St. Ignatius, MT, Montay Christensen of Merritt Island Fl, Sylvana Finkbeiner of MI, and great-grandson Connor Christensen of CT.

Many thanks to all of John’s friends for their kindness. Special thanks to Cheryl and staff at “Closer to Home” in St, Ignatius, MT; Bobby Sallows and Merle English of Merritt Island for their status as “great caregivers” John will truly be missed. Airborne all the shall be missed.

A tribute for John will be in the spring at FT Benning, GA.

Ralph Stanley Kroshus
PABLO — Ralph Stanley Kroshus, age 86 of Pablo, passed away from natural causes on Monday July 16, 2007 at the Evergreen Health and Rehab Center.

Ralph was born on August 8, 1920 in Iowa. The family moved to Crosby, North Dakota and Ralph went to school in Crosby. He joined the US Air Force and was a mechanic during WWII. Ralph was stationed in London, England during the bombings there. His father taught him how to read blueprints and build houses. He also worked as a hunting and fishing guide in the Bob Marshall Wilderness.

Ralph learned how to fly small airplanes, enjoyed working in his workshop building picnic tables and many other crafts.

He was a member of the VFW and the Elks Club.

His parents, one brother and two sons, Leonard and Danny Kroshus, preceded Ralph in death.

He is survived by his wife Dorothy of Ronan, daughters Shirley Brown of Chelan, WA, Janet Hawkins of Kent, WA, brothers Dale of ND, Don of CO, Glen of AK, a sister Helen Waters of TX, 8 grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

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

Helen Gillespie Doty
POLSON — Helen Gillespie Doty lived eighty-one beautiful years, and passed on peacefully in her son’s home on July 17, 2007.

Born to Paul and Helen Gillespie on March 6, 1926 in St. Paul, Minnesota, the family moved to Little Falls, Minnesota before settling in Missoula, Montana in 1937. Helen cherished her growing-up years with her only sibling, Dale, and often recounted many tender stories of their childhood together.

An avid horse lover, she regularly shared long bareback rides with her friends up Pattee Canyon on her favorite steed, Tonka.

Helen frequently remarked how blessed she felt to have the same best friends from the sixth grade, and no one ever had a better friend than Helen. She poured herself into every relationship, having the amazing ability to convince each friend and family member they were supremely important and genuinely loved. On par with her warm personality was Helen’s eager pursuit of learning and loyal devotion to her family.

After graduating from Hellgate High in 1944, she earned her Bachelors of Science Degree in Microbiology in 1948 from the University of Montana. Halfway through her graduate work at the University of Minnesota, she married Jack Doty on September 3, 1949. Faithfully and selflessly, Helen then devoted her time and skills to helping him earn his Master’s Degree and PhD. Commendations for her proficient editing and typing of Jack’s innumerable papers were words of praise she always deferred to her husband.

Supportive in every way, Helen was the epitome of a helpmate and a dedicated mother to her sons. The four men have nothing but admiration for her continual nurturing, patience, and encouragement, as she was often alone in raising them while Jack taught aboard.

Helen loved people. She treasured her membership in various groups, serving others with a warm and welcoming spirit, and interacting gracefully with diverse cultures. Outgoing and organized, Helen found herself involved in a myriad of societies and associations. President of her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta, she was also the beloved “Little Sister” of Sigma Chi. In addition to being active in her local P.E.O. chapter, Helen enjoyed the intellectual stimulation of her ‘As You Like It’ group, the pleasure of her bridge club, and the fellowship of her Hippie Moms meetings. Helen was also a longstanding member of the Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit.

Tutored by a professional French chef, Helen had the remarkable ability to transform even cheese and crackers into a gourmet experience. Her gift of hospitality extended around the globe with stays in Ethiopia, Zambia, Saudi Arabia, and Botswana. Helen entertained and blessed countless new friends and acquaintances during Jack’s employment with various overseas universities, causing their time abroad to be not only educational, but also delightful.

Helen’s final years were spent in Polson, Montana where she lived with her son, John and his family who were profoundly blessed to enjoy her beautiful smile and sweet spirit each day. She quickly became an integral and important part of their daily lives.

Helen took on a deeper appreciation for prayer in her last days, confessed faith in Jesus Christ as her savior, and fell peacefully to sleep with the assurance of where she would awaken.

Helen is preceded in death by: her husband Jack, brother Dale, parents Paul and Helen, and a grandson Seth.

Helen is survived by four sons: Chip of Missoula; Paul (Tina) of Denver, Colorado; Mark (Laura) of Corvallis; John (Connie) of Polson; eight grandchildren; brother-in-law Bill Doty of Palm Springs, California; sister-in-law Joan Gillespie of Missoula; and many beloved friends.

A memorial service will be held on Thursday, July 26, 2007 at 10 a.m. at the Holy Spirit Episcopal Church, 130 South 6th East, Missoula, Montana.

Condolences may be sent to the family at

Randolph Boyce Ingram
POLSON - Former Polson mayor Randy Ingram, 33, passed July 18, 2007, in Polson.

Randy was born in Missoula on June 3, 1974. He attended elementary and high school in Polson. Randy attended the University of Montana and graduated in 1996 with a degree in business administration. Randy was very proud of being an alum and loved to attend Griz football games and tailgate.

In August of 1996 he married the love of his life, Brooke Dahl. They made their home in Polson where Randy wanted to live his life and raise his family.

Randy was employed at First Citizens Bank as an assistant vice president, commercial loan officer and was on the board of directors. Randy ran for Polson mayor at the age of 27 and was elected in 2002 and re-elected for a second term in 2005. He served as mayor for five years accomplishing many great things for the city of Polson.

Randy was a true public servant at heart. He wanted more than anything to serve his community and the people he loved. He was always striving to make Polson a better place for everyone. Randy will always be remembered as a positive, energetic, honest, fair and highly intelligent man. His easygoing, compassionate personality drew people of all ages.

Randy was very active in the community through, his involvement as a director of the Polson Chamber of Commerce, Lake County Community Development, president of Mission Mountain Enterprises, director Polson Loaves and Fishes, Rotary Club, BPOE, Masonic Lodge, Shriners, Shrine Scooter Patrol, golf league, bowling league and Thursday night golf with buddies. Some of Randy's proudest accomplishments were being awarded Citizen of the Year by BPOE and the first ever Outstanding Leadership Award by the Polson Chamber of Commerce.

Randy loved the outdoors and was very active with fishing, hunting, golf, boating, shooting, skiing and snowmobiling. Randy loved to socialize with friends whether for a barbecue, a game of pool, fantasy football or a poker night with the boys.

Randy leaves behind a family who adored him and will miss him greatly. His beloved wife Brooke, their beautiful son Evan (Bug) and an unborn son.

Also surviving him are his parents, William and Jolanda Ingram of Polson; his in-laws George and Dianne Dahl of Elmo who loved him like their own son; his brothers Dwane (JoAnn) Ingram of Polson, Thomas (Marie) and Joseph Baker both of Missoula; his sisters Sherrie (Fred) McFarland of Polson and Theresa (Bruce) Wicker of Oklahoma. Randy is also survived by two aunts, many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews. He is also survived by his beloved four-legged Remi and too many wonderful and dear friends to mention.

Everyone loved Randy and he will never be forgotten. He will always be remembered for all of his accomplishments, his friendliness and will live on in memory through the legacy of his children.

First Citizens Bank in Polson has started a trust fund in memory of Randy to honor his two sons. Please contact (406) 883-4358 for further information.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to Polson Shriners.

Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, July 27 at the Polson Country Club driving range. Golf attire requested.

Heather Leigh-May Adams
BOZEMAN — Heather Leigh-May Adams was born July 16th, 2007 and went to be with the Ancestors on July 21st, 2007 in Bozeman Deaconess Hospital. Even though Heather was with us for only a short time, she will remain in our hearts and lives forever.

Survivors include her parents Brendan Adams and Jami Piapot; her brothers D'Shawn and Jamian all of Bozeman; grandparents Clete and Vicki LaForge of Bozeman, Darrell and Lisa Piapot of Pablo and Andrea Adams of Pablo; uncles Gabe, Vincent and Calvin Shepard, DJ (Jule) Piapot, Jordan St. Clair, Kyle, Cody and Seth Stensgar, Angelo Gonzalez, Dustin (Brandy) Guardipee and Gavin Guardipee; aunties Isabelle Pablo, Donella Piapot, Deanna Azure, Lisona and Paige Gonzalez, Pheonix and Carmalita Matt, Angela Guardipee and Colleen Tenas; great grandparents Louis (Gert) Adams, Carol Wood, Joe and Patti Piapot and Vic (Judy) Matt and numerous cousins.

Heather was preceded in death by her brother Dayami Piapot, great-grandma Nadine Adams, auntie Heather Shepard Adams , her yaya Kelly Matt-Gonzalez, uncle Travis Guardipee, grandpa Jamie Guardipee and her tupye' Margaret Matt Finley.

Pallbearers are Andrew Castro, Nate Cutfinger, Nick and Michael Assinaboine. Honorary pallbearers are Gabe, Vinny and Calvin Shepard, Jordan St. Clair, Kyle, Seth and Cody Stensgar and all close friends and family.

Heather was laid to rest next to Heather, Viola, grandma Nade, Michael and Marie.

E. Irene Anderson
ST. IGNATIUS — Our beloved mother, E. Irene Anderson, 82, passed away Friday, July 13th at the Millpond Assisted Living in St. Ignatius with her family by her side.

Irene was born to Delma (Whitehead) and William Boyce Lake on March 1, 1925 in Falloma, Oregon.

On January 19, 1944, Irene married her eternal companion, Lawrence Ray Anderson, in the Salt Lake City, Utah Temple for time and eternity. Together they raised 10 children on a dairy farm near St. Ignatius, which they owned and operated for many years and is still being run by their youngest son, Roy.

Irene was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She spent many of her years being involved with the Boy Scout Program, which she really enjoyed and was made Stake Scouting Director in Oct. 1967, where she served for nearly eight years. Throughout the years, she served in many Ward and Stake callings. Her whole heart was in serving the Lord, her family and others.

She also sewed many things for family and friends. She made hand quilted baby blankets for each of her grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchild, never missing a single one - including the ones due to arrive before this year is over.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her stepfather Francis Moore, her husband Lawrence Anderson, her brother Orral Lake, her grandson Michael Anderson and Scott McCall, a great grandson Mason McCall, a daughter-in-law Glenda Anderson and a son-in-law Steven McCall.

She leaves behind 10 children Diana (George) Kopecky of Drexel, MO., Merlin (Janet) Anderson of Dillon, MT., Sharon McCall of Draper, UT., Dennis (Ginger) Anderson of Missoula, MT., Steven (Kristen) Anderson of Casa Grande, AZ., Jeniel (Michael) Bennefield of St. Ignatius, MT., Gloria (Tom) Haynes of Arlee, MT., Judith (Melvin) Murphy of West Branch, IA., Roy (Charlene) Anderson of St. Ignatius, MT. and LaRene (Rich) Kinkade of O'Fallon, IL.; her brothers Eldon and Bill Lake and sister Lillian Kosteleky; 60 grandchildren, 93 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great-granddaughter.

We would like to extend a special thanks to her many friends at the "Millpond", especially to her special friend Mary Hernandez, to Lake County Hospice and Ralph Foster of Foster and Durgeloh Funeral Home. Mom will be greatly missed by her family, friends and all whose lives she touched.

The family would like to invite you to a time of sharing and visitation on Thursday evening, July 19th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the St. Ignatius Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Irene's services will be held on Friday, July 20th at 10 a.m. in the St. Ignatius Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Interment will follow in the Pleasant View Cemetery

Jeanie Burland
PABLO - Jeanie Burland, 61, passed away at St. Joseph Hospital in Polson, MT on July 3, 2007. She battled many health problems.

Jean was born April 30, 1946 in St. Ignatius, MT to William and Juanita (Pellew) Gardipe. She grew up in the Evaro and Mission area. Later, she attended school at Villa Ursline in St. Ignatius and Boulder, MT.

She then married the love of her life Hubert "Hub" Burland in 1969 at Pablo, MT.

She enjoyed camping, fishing, watching her son stock car racing, doing jigsaw puzzles and her filling in puzzle books. She especially enjoyed time spent with her grandchildren and all family members.

She is preceded in death by her parents, William and Juanita Gardipe, her husband Hubert Burland, brothers Morris "Muggs" and Lyle David "Dave" Gardipe; sisters Rosemary "Penny" Moulton, Paulette "Pauly" Bisson and Jeanette (Paulette's infant twin) and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.

She is survived by her step-father Harold "Pa" Kent of Charlo, MT; daughter Christine Burland (Paul Mahseelah, Jr); son Russell Burland (Jackie AimsBack), all of Pablo; her grandchildren Levi Burland, Aaron Burland, Tiffany Colman and Kiersten Mahseelah, all of whom she loved very dearly; brothers and sisters Charles "Scotty" Gardipe of Evaro, MT, Charlene (Jim) Sijohn of Wellpinit, WA, Bruce "Butch" (Evie) Gardipe of Worley, ID, Linda Gardipe of Ronan, MT, Marilyn Gardipe of Pablo, James (Rose) Gardipe of St. Ignatius, MT, Marvin Gardipe (Sylvie Aimsback) of Charlo, MT and Bernie (Tim) Atwin of Ronan, MT and nieces and nephews too numerous to name.

James Gordon Zackuse, Jr.
ST. IGNATIUS - James Gordon Zackuse, Jr., 21, passed away at his home in St. Ignatius on Thursday, July 5, 2007.

Jimmy was born on May 29, 1986 in St. Ignatius to James G. Zackuse, Sr. and Lorene (Bourdon) Zackuse. Jimmy was a graduate of St. Ignatius High School and was attending Salish Kootenai College in Pablo. He had worked for the Summer Youth, Fire Fighting, and Jailer at the Tribe, placed systems in cars, worked at Boom City in Tulalip, WA and was currently working at Grey Wolf Casino.

He enjoyed fishing, hunting, camping, powwows, playing pool, disk jockeying, making music and visiting with family and friends. Even though he lived in Montana he took many trips to visit family and friends to Tulalip Washington. He was respectful and never passed by without a hug, letting you know that he loved you. He had a true heart of gold and will be greatly missed.

Jimmy was preceded in death by his grandparents Ruth and William Zackuse, Sr., Columbus F. and Francis M. Bourdon and his father James G. Zackuse, Sr.

Jimmy was survived by his mother Lorene Zackuse of St. Ignatius; sisters DeeDee Birthmark of St. Ignatius and Dorene Bourdon of Pablo his god-parents Uncle Billy Zackuse of Tulalip, Wash and Auntie Rachel Arlee of Pablo, MT; nieces Jennifer Birthmark, Tash Birthmark, Malina Bourdon and Becky Ashley; nephews Gregory Weatherwax and Gabriel Andrew and numerous other aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.

Susan Linda Sturman
ST. IGNATIUS - Susan Linda Sturman, a beloved daughter of Zion, was born on October 27, 1960 in Washington, D.C. She grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland. Susie moved to Heaven on Sunday July 8, 2007 at St. Luke's Hospital in Ronan, MT following a serious illness. Susie was surrounded by devoted friends and family. Susie called herself a "Jewish Believer", a Jew who believes that Jesus is Lord and Messiah of Israel. She actively supported ministries that helped bring Jews home to their land in Israel.

She loved Israel and looked forward to her next visit there. Susie shared her love for Jesus with others and was quick to teach about her Jewish culture. She taught church groups and school classes about Hanukkah and opened her home to others at special holidays.

Susie loved the outdoors and traveling. She hiked, kayaked and enjoyed walks with her golden retriever. Susie played basketball for the University of Connecticut and received her Master's Degree from George Washington University in Exercise Physiology. For many years she coached girls basketball at National Cathedral School in Washington, D.C. before moving to Montana in 1994. She worked for eight years at Two Eagle River School, where she taught staff and students about experiential education. She organized activities and trips into the outdoors to help others enjoy nature as she did.

Susie loved to eat good food. She was an excellent cook and treated others to her latest Mediterranean dish. Susie was very devoted to her family. She grew up in Maryland with many happy memories of boating on the Chesapeake Bay. She especially loved her other family, Peb and Kim, with whom she had lived for nearly seventeen years. Her parents Gilbert and Lori Sturman of Silver Spring, MD, brothers David (Tracy) of St. Ignatius, MT, Howard (Robin) of Columbia, MD, five nephews and one niece survive Susie.

Donations can be made to Cornerstone Faith Center in St. Ignatius, MT for contributions to the Israeli ministries that were so close to Susie's heart. Grogan Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family at

Rodney Little
POLSON - Rodney Little, age 71 of Polson, passed away from natural causes on Wednesday July 4, 2007 at his home.

Rodney was born on November 27, 1935 to Floyd and Velma Little at Colville, Washington. Rodney married Kathleen Marie Milner in 1955 at Reno, Nevada. They later divorced and then remarried Kathleen Marie in 2005 at Polson, MT.

Rodney served in the US Army. He was a logger, oil field worker, and worked in the plywood mills. He was a member of the VFW. Rodney enjoyed camping, hunting, fishing and his family.

His parents and grandparents precede Rodney in death.

His wife Kathleen Marie Little, son Daniel Raymond Little, sister Randy Petzel, brother-in-law Roy Petzel, one grandchild, and 2 great-grandchildren survive Rodney.

Rodney was greatly loved and will be greatly missed.

Grogan Funeral Home & Crematory is assisted the family with arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family at

Howard Samuel Smiley
SPOKANE - Howard Samuel Smiley was born on April 21, 1945 and passed away on July 8, 2007.

He is survived by sons, Robert and Gunnar Smiley of Spokane, WA; daughter, Chantel Dasovich of Great Falls, MT; daughter, Doreen Dasovich of Butte, MT; 15 grandchildren; brother, Ruben Smiley; and a sister, Beverly.

Memorial contributions may be made in Howard's name to P.O. Box 7381, Spokane, WA 99207.