RAVALLI COUNTY OBITUARIES

K


GRACE LAWS KANE
October 4, 1889 - February 5, 1966
Mrs. Thomas Kane Passes In Calif., Rites Pending
    Funeral rites are pending at the Dowling Mortuary for Mrs. Thomas (Grace) Kane, 87, former longtime valley resident who died Sunday at Livermore, Calif.
    She was born Grace Laws in October of 1888 in Kansas. She came with her parents, the late Mr. and Mrs. J.B. Laws, to the Corvallis area in 1896 and attended schools here. She continued to live near Corvallis following her marriage to Thomas Kane, who served two terms as senator from Ravalli County, and also a well-known valley farmer. He died in 1939. Mrs. Kane continued to live on the family place near Corvallis until it was sold, then moved to Deer Lodge to be near a daughter, Mrs. Doris Flink, for several years. In recent years she live din Livermore with a son, James.
    Other survivors are a daughter, Mrs. William Charlton, San Francisco; two brothers, Ralph Laws of Hamilton and Robert Laws of the West Fork, and six grandchildren.
    She was a longtime member of the Hamilton Presbyterian Church.
Ravalli Republican, February 7, 1966

MYRTLE EAST KEIRNS
October 2, 1881 - November 3, 1963
Keirns Rites Held in Stevi
    Funeral services were held in the Whitesitt Chapel in Stevensville Thursday afternoon for Mrs. Myrtle Keirns, 82, Stevi area resident since 1904 who died Sunday at a rest home. Rev. John T. Hall officiated and burial was in Victor Cemetery.
    Mrs. Keirns was born October 2, 1881 in Jasper County, Indiana and came to the valley in 1898. She married Abe Keirns in Victor in 1902 and the family moved to the Stevi area in 1904.
    Survivors include two daughters, Mrs. Hazel Cunningham, Portland, Oregon, and Mrs. Bessie Dunlap, Seeley Lake; a son, Gerald; sister, Mrs. Ivy Dwyer; one grandson and two great grandchildren.
Ravalli Republican, November 7, 1963

MARY C. STRANGE KELLEY
September 17, 1878 - October 23, 1977
Corvallis - Mary C. Kelley, 99, passed away at Daly Memorial Hospital October 23, 1977. She was born at Corvallis September 17, 1878. She was the daughter of the late Benjamin Strange and Amanda Goffe Strange. She married M.L. Kelley at Corvallis, March 7, 1894. He preceded her in death. She had lived in the Valley all her life.
    Funeral services are set for Wednesday october 26 at 2 p.m. at the Corvallis Cemetery. Reader will be Margaret Lockridge of the Christian Science Church.
    Survivors include several nieces and nephews. Everett Hustead, Buhl, Ida.í; Ted Strange, Pioneer, Calif.; Fay Thompson, Homedale, Ida.; Lorraine Logan, Hamilton; Edna Thomas, Corvallis; Mrs. Roy (Idell) Hardin, Tacoma, Wash.; Mrs. W.G. (Irene) Hickey, Stevensville. Dowling Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Ravalli Republic, October 24, 1977

CLAUD L. KELLY
February 4, 1890 - January 27, 1974
CLAUD KELLY PASSES ON, THURSDAY RITES
    Claud L. Kelly, a former Stevensville resident, died Sunday at St. Marie's, Idaho, at the age of 83. He was born February 4, 1890 in Geneva, Kansas, and spent his early years in Kansas and Oklahoma. He served during the Mexican campaign and during World War I with the U.S. Army.
    Kelly and Margaret Becker were married in December of 1919 at Lamar, Colorado. His wife died in 1963 and he was married to Helen Smith of Whitefish in 1966. She died in 1971.  
    Survivors include three sons, Robert of Missoula, Earl of Fernwood, Idaho, and Earl of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and a daughter, Mrs. Garth Longbottom of Spokane. Several grandchildren and great-grandchildren also survive.
    Funeral services will be held Thursday at 3 p.m. at Whitesitt's Chapel. Rev. E.J. Ruff will officiate and burial will be in Riverview cemetery.
Abstract from: Ravalli Republic, January 29, 1974
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
ANNA KERCHNER
 October 11, 1840 - April 16, 1906
    Mrs. Anna Kerchner, mother of Mrs. Ella Thompson and Mrs. William (Lucy) Dinneen, died April 16 at the age of 66. She has been a resident of the Bitterroot Valley since 1877 and was the mother of four children. She was born in Germany in 1840 and came to America in 1861. She was a member of the Presbyterian Church, uniting with that denomination when residing in Stevensville, many years ago.
    The funeral was held Thursday, Rev. J.E. Burkhart of the Presbyterian Church officiating, and the body was interred in the Riverview Cemetery.
The Western News, April 25, 1906

JAMES KERLEE
Pioneer Is Frozen in Snow Storm
James Kerlee of Darby, While on Way to Spend Thanksgiving With His Family Perishes in Snow Storm
Darby, November 29 - James Kerlee, 67, pioneer resident of the Bitter Root valley, was a victim of the storms of last week. His frozen body was found today, 30 miles south of here, by Lew Conner, trapper, where Kerlee had sunk to the snow-covered ground from exhaustion while on his way to Darby to spend Thanksgiving with his family.
    Conner, who also had been caught in the storm, was almost exhausted when he found the body at 4 o'clock this afternoon on the Nez Perce trail through the Deep Creek section. Through Ranger Roy Witter, Conner got word to Bert Kerlee, a son, over the forestry telephone to the Darby Mercantile company here, and came on to the Allen Ranger station, while Witter returned to remain with the body till help arrived.
    Jack Kerlee, son of the dead man, and a party of eight men left Darby late this afternoon for the Deep Creek section to get the body. They were equipped for a hurried trip and will return late tomorrow night or Thursday. The trip through the hills will be made on snow shoes.
    Kerlee had been in and out from the mine for the last 30 years, but for about nine years had been working it. The mine, "Daisy" is located about 40 miles south of Darby and members of his family here knew of his plans to be in Darby for Thanksgiving.. This he started out to do and, after having gone over the ridge and down into Deep Creek Canyon, was overcome in the deep snow. When found, his dog was still at his side. He was making the trip on snow shoes.
    At 5 o'clock this afternoon, Conner had arrived at the Allen ranger station, according to word received here, and his condition is reported as better.
    Kerlee is survived by his wife and 10 children, seven of whom live in Darby, while three are in Missoula.
The Western News, December 1, 1921, page 1


LEWIS BERTEN KERLEE
August 27, 1887 - February 1, 1954
BERT KERLEE RITES TODAY, PASSED AWAY IN MISSOULA.
    Funeral services were held this afternoon at the Dowling chapel in Hamilton in tribute to Bert Kerlee who passed away in a Missoula Hospital Monday. Interment was made in Lone Pine cemetery. Pallbearers were E.E. Hart, William Daw, F.V. Scudder, Denny Gray, Robert Nicholson, and Ray Flightner.
   Lewis Berten Kerlee was born at Hot Springs, Arkansas August 27, 1887, a son of the late pioneer couple James and Mary Kerlee. The baby boy came to the Bitter Root with his parents, and other members of the family, in April 1888, and the family settled in the Tincup area upon a homestead.
    Mr. Kerlee was married to Anna V. Rhino June 28, 1909. The widow and their foster daughter, Mrs. Ronald Bibler, both of Darby, survive. Mrs. Bibler's children Helen, Douglas and Gerald are also survivors as are the following brother and sisters: Ben of Salem, Oregon; Miss Floss L. Kerlee, Warm Springs; Mrs. Bessie K. Monroe, Hamilton. There are a number of nieces and nephews.
Abstract from: The Western News, February 4, 1954

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
EDWARD J. (JACK) KERLEE
June 5, 1878 - July 25, 1952
JACK KERLEE, WELL-KNOWN OLD-TIMER OF DARBY AREA, PASSES.
    Funeral services for Edward J. (Jack) Kerlee who died at a Missoula hospital Friday, were conducted by Rev. R.J. Kennedy at the Baptist church in Darby Tuesday afternoon and burial was in Lone Pine cemetery there, near the graves of his wife, Eva, and their sons, Arthur LeRoy and James David. Pallbearers were E.E. (Wood) Hart, Charles Rouse, Curt Ray, Curt Matteson, Floyd R. Neill, and Fred Wilkerson. Many friends who had known Mr. Kerlee throughout the 64 years of his life in the Darby community, gathered to attend the rites. He was a member of the Baptist church and of the Darby Odd Fellows and Rebekah lodges.
    Born at St. James, Missouri, June 4, 1878, Mr. Kerlee was the oldest son of James and Mary Kerlee.The marriage of Jack Kerlee and Eva Claire Helt took place June 10, 1902 at Corvallis, Rev. W.D. Lear performing the ceremony. Their home, until Eva died in 1924, was always in the Darby community. Six children were born to them, four surviving. These are Clarence of Butte, Robert and Quentin of Darby,  and Ruth Morfort of Santa Barbara, California. Others to survive are the brothers, Ben Kerlee of Salem, Oregon; Bert of Darby, and three sisters, Bessie K. Monroe of Hamilton, Rose L. Henderson of Hubbard, Oregon, and Floss L. Kerlee of Butte. There are several cousins, nephews and nieces in the Bitter Root valley, and Mr. Kerlee is survived by seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Abstract from: The Western News, July 31, 1952


ANNA E. COLLINS KERRIGAN
April 29, 1877 - February 1, 1950
FUNERAL SERVICES TO BE SATURDAY FOR MRS. KERRIGAN, BURIAL IN VICTOR
    Mrs. Anna E. Kerrigan died early Wednesday morning at St. Patricks hospital in Missoula following a long illness. Funeral services will be conducted at 2 o'clock Saturday afternoon in the Dowling chapel with the Rev. Beryl Furr officiating and burial will be in the Victor cemetery. Pallbearers will be John Greenfield, Adam Hornung, J.E. Babbitt, J.A. Butcher, Orville Buker, and W.C. Thrailkill.
    Mrs. Kerrigan was born April 29, 1877 at Diamond, Utah and to the valley when she was four years old with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas N. Collins. Mrs. Kerrigan was married to James F. Kerrigan in 1904 at Gibbonsville. He preceded her in death on February 22, 1947.
    Survivors include a sister-in-law, Mrs. Lavinia Collins, and nieces, Mrs. C.K. Moore and Mrs. Clara Peters, all of Hamilton; a brother-in-law, Claude Treece of Missoula; and two nephews, Clarence Collins, Alpine, Oregon, and Sidney Treece, Burns, Oregon.
Abstract from: The Western News, February 2, 1950

HENRY MERTON KNELL
January 1, 1908 - March 31, 1985
    Henry Merton Knell, 77, of Hamilton died Sunday of cancer at his daughterís home in Huson. He was born January 1, 1908 in Green Bay, Wisconsin, the son of Eva and Francis Kneel, and grew up and attended school in Wisconsin. He and his wife, Sylvia, were married July 3, 1967 in Reno, Nevada.
    Survivors include his wife, Sylvia, of Hamilton, a son, Arthur Knell, Simi Valley, California; two daughters, Rose Marie Knell, Missoula, and Patricia Couser, Huson; and five grandchildren.
    Private family services for burial of the ashes will be held at Sunset Memorial Park with the Rev. Hugh Herbert of the First Methodist Church officiating.
Abstract from: the Ravalli Republic, April 2, 1985

MATH KOHLER
March 13, 1914 - June 22, 1990
    Math Kohler, 76, of Quincy, Wash., died Friday, June 22, in Central Washing Hospital after a sudden illness. He was born March 13, 1914 to Math and Mary Skalsky Kohler at Glen Ullin, ND. He attended schools in Glen Ullin.
    He married Esther M. Hanson on October 5, 1939 in Hamilton. In 1945, they moved to Renton, Wash., where he began working for Boeing Aircraft as a mechanic. They lived in George, Wash., from 1969 until 1980, when Mr. Kohler retired from farming. He was a member of Christ the Savior Lutheran Church in George.
    Survivors include his wife, at home; one son, Gerald D. Kohler of Port Orchard, Wash.; a daughter, Joyce Price of Woodinville, Wash.; one brother, William Kohler of Glen Ullin, Wash.; five sisters, Eva Mayer of Missoula; Elizabeth Emter of Vancouver, Wash., Maggie Top of Creston, Florence Markes of Seattle, Wash., and Tillie Colette of Salem, Ore.; and seven grandchildren. He was preceded in death by three brothers and two sisters.
    Scharbachís Columbia Funeral Chapel in Quiney is in charge of arrangements.
Ravalli Republic, July 11, 1990


JAMES KRINOCK
Former Darby Man Drowns In California
    The double tragedy which claimed the life of a former Darby man, James Krinock and his 12-year old son, Warner, at Weed, California, has been reported to Darby and Hamilton relatives. The report said that the Krinock father and son were with two other men in a fishing boat on a lake near Wee, when the accident occurred. One man was able to reach the shore, but the three others were drowned. The man who escaped said James Krinock tried to save his son, himself drowning in the attempt. Burial was made the following Wednesday at Ashland, Oregon, where Mrs. Krinock's father, Warner Laird and other members of the former Darby family reside. James Krinock was at one time a soldier at Fort Missoula. He was about 40 years of age and is survived by his widow, a daughter and a son. He was engaged in defense work at Weed.
The Western News, Thursday, May 13, 1943, page 1
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
AUGUSTA KURTZ
August 12, 1853 - March 23, 1923
AUGUSTA KURTZ PASSES TO REWARD.
    Mrs. Augusta Kurtz died last Friday at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Louis Wirth. Heart disease was the cause of death. The funeral was held Monday from the German Evangelical church and was largely attended. Rev. Gustav Mertz conduced the service.
    Mrs. August Kurtz was born August 12, 1853, in the province of Posen, now a part of the republic of Poland. She came to America in 1868 when 16 years of age and while a resident of Indiana, married Mr. Kurtz. They emigrated to Minnesota where they lived for a number of years, coming to Montana about eight years ago. Her husband died in 1918. She is survived by six children: Mrs. William Strange, Mrs. Elbert Kuether of Minnesota, Mrs. L.J. Wirth and John, Paul, and Ed C. Kurtz of Hamilton. Mrs. Kurtz was a devout Christian, a most estimable woman who is mourned by a wide circle of friends.
The Western News, March 29, 1923

GUS KUSTER
March 7, 1869 - February 14, 1954
Rites Conducted Yesterday For Gus Kuster Who Passed Away Here Saturday
    The funeral for Gust Kuster was held yesterday afternoon at the Dowling Chapel in Hamilton. Interment was made in Riverview Cemetery. Those serving as pallbearers were T.H. Sherwin, Nick J. Kramis, Wilford Poppie, Buford Kaa, Edward F. Grimes and Milton D. Byrd. Death was due to a heart attack.
    Mr. Kuster retired from active work when he, with his family, moved to Hamilton to make their home in 1933. The illness which resulted in his death Sunday noon at Daly Memorial Hospital was of but short duration. Gus Kuster was born march 7, 1860 in Germany. He came to the United States with his parents and his 11 sisters and brothers, when he was 14 years of age. The family settled at Grand Island Nebraska. He and Mrs. Kuster were united in marriage December 15, 1901 at Evanston, Wyoming.
    Mr. Kuster worked for 14 years as a railroad engineer for the Union Pacific in Wyoming and later for four years out of Missoula in a similar capacity for the Northern Pacific. He came to the Bitter Root in 1907, during the Big Ditch-McIntosh Red Apple Boom days, and acquired farming property south of Victor. After operating the farm there, he moved to another farm located east of Corvallis in 1929. He operated that farm until coming to Hamilton. Mr. Kuster was a member of Hamilton lodge 1651, BPOE.
    Survivors, other than the widow, are his son, Col. Kenneth F. Kuster, who, after service in Korea, is now quartermaster in charge of the 16th Army Corps, stationed at Sandai, Japan; his daughter, Bess Kuster of Los Angeles, California; a stepdaughter, Hilda Holley of Hamilton; two grandchildren: Mrs. Donna Crago, Edwards, California, and Douglas Kuster, who is music instructor in the Browning, Montana high school; and two great granddaughters. Also surviving are two sisters, Mrs. Henry Hahn and Miss Wanda Kuster, both of Grand Island, Nebraska. Mr. Kusterís twin sister passed away four years ago. Among his parentís children were three sets of twins.
    Here to join Mrs. Kuster and Miss Helley for the last rites came Bess Kuster from California and Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Kuster and their child, Terry Lee. The Douglas Kuster family left this morning for Browning.
Abstract from The Western News, February 18, 1954

CRISSIE M. KYLE
March 21, 1865 - December 1, 1942
    Mrs. John Kyle, 77, a resident of the valley for 55 years, died in her apartment at 719 North Fifth Street about 6:30 pm Tuesday. Death was attributed to heart disease. She had been in ill health for several years, but her passing came as a surprise to her many friends.
    She was born March 21, 1865 in Marshalltown, Iowa, and came to the valley from there with her husband and children in 1887. They first located on a ranch in the Rye Creek area near Darby. Later, they ranched in the Como and Darby areas and came here from Darby, where they had made their home for several years, about a year ago. She was a member of the Christian Church.
    Her Widower; daughter, Mrs. Leslie Wheeler, and son, Ray, Hamilton; daughter, Mrs. Vera Hassan, Los Angeles,  California; son, Lynne, Gunnison,  Colorado, and sisters, Mrs. Mattie Greelee and Mrs. Alta Mouchka, Belle Plain, Iowa, survive. The body is at Dowling's.
Ravalli Republican, December 3, 1942

JACK OWEN KYLE
December 24, 1912 - March 17, 1992
    Jack Owen Kyle, 79, of Hamilton, died March 17, of natural causes at Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital. He was born December 24, 1912 at Lost Horse, the son of Melvin and Edna Brusch Kyle. He received his education in Hamilton.
    On March 3, 1934, he married Rose Rimes in Stevensville. The couple lived in Hamilton for four years, moved to Oakland where Jack went to school at Boeing, then moved to Alaska where he worked for Alaska Air Lines. In 1948, they moved back to Montana and they resided in Hamilton for the past 15 years.
    Survivors include: his wife, Rose, of the family home in Hamilton; one daughter, Sharon, and her husband, Lee Good, of Cardwell, Mont.; one granddaughter, Karen Gunther of Whitehall, Mont.; one grandson, Bob Good of Boulder, Mont.; one great grandson, Kyle Good; one niece, Joan Kyle, and one nephew, Jim Kyle. He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Melvin.
    A memorial service will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Daly-Leach Chapel with the Rev. David Donkle officiating. The family suggests memorials to the charity of donorís choice.
Abstract from: Ravalli Republic, March 20, 1992

SAMUEL THOMAS KYLE
March 29, 1850 - October 7, 1918
Death Near Darby
Samuel Kyle Passed Away Monday, October 7
Had Been a Resident of the Bitter Root Valley Since 1881, Coming Here From Iowa
Darby, October 17 - Samuel T. Kyle died at his home, about four miles from Darby, at 4 oíclock Monday, October 7, He was born in Macomb, Illinois in 1850, was married to Miss Carrie Beil in Iowa in 1975 and came to the Bitter Root in 1881. besides his wife, he leaves to mourn his loss four sons, Bert, George, Roy, all living near their fatherís home; and Edwin, who is with the American expeditionary forces in France. There are also two brothers, J.M. Kyle, who lives near Darby, and W.H Kyle, who lives at Greene, Iowa.
    The funeral was held at 2 p.m. at the I.O.O.F. hall under the auspices of the Odd Fellows lodge, of which he had been a member for many years.
Ravalli Republican, October 25, 1918