Cover photo for Stanley H. Stelling's Obituary
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1969 Stanley 2020

Stanley H. Stelling

December 31, 1969 — July 18, 2020

Stanley H. Stelling, 95, of Missoula, MT passed away July 18, 2020 at his home of COPD and Emphysema complications. He was born on November 30, 1924 in Great Falls, MT to William and Charlotte Stelling of Fort Shaw, MT. As young boy, he lived with his family on a farm and was educated in Fort Shaw and Simms schools prior to joining the Navy.

In May of 1949, he married Phoebe Skinner of Simms, MT. Shortly after they married, they purchased the family farm in Fort Shaw where they became dairy farmers and raised their family. They sold the dairy farm in 1969 and remained in the Fort Shaw area as cattle ranchers. After Phoebe’s death in 2003, Stanley sold the ranch in Fort Shaw and moved to Missoula in 2006 to be closer to family.

He was a WWII Navy veteran and an active member of the Simms Lion’s Club, Fairfield Eastern Star and Masons. He was a recipient of the Bridger Award as Outstanding Milk Producer/Farmer for Cascade County and was one of the first dairy producers in Montana to install an automatic pipeline milking system. He served on the Simms School Board, Sun River Electric Board, Cascade County Farm Service Agency and was President of the MT Milk Producer’s Association.

He was an avid card player and enjoyed playing cards with his family, especially his great-grandchildren while spending time with them at the lake. His goal was to live long enough to see his great-grandchildren graduate from high school, a fairly lofty goal for a guy 95-years old. During these past few years of medical ups and downs, he knew that was an unrealistic goal. His greatest hope, then, was to be able to live long enough to vote in the Presidential Election one last time.

Stanley was one of nine children and is survived by his sister, Anna Weinfurter; brothers, William, Jack and Jerry Stelling; daughters: Carole Anne Stephenson (Dave), Libby; Phyllis Schaefer (Kerry), Salmon Lake; Charlotte Anderson (Ray), Trout Creek; son Tom Stelling, Missoula and family friend, Ida Wallace, Fort Shaw. He is survived by nine grandchildren: Brent Stephenson, Hidden Springs, ID; Heather Stephenson, San Francisco, CA; Jamie Schaefer, Eagle, ID; Jason Schaefer, Missoula; Joel Schaefer, Helena; Kirsten Geiger, Belgrade; Megan Kelly, Glen; Corey Stelling, Helena and Andrew Stelling, Great Falls; He is also survived by fifteen great-grandchildren: Zane Hight and Tessa Geiger, Belgrade; Quinn and Crosby Stephenson, Hidden Springs, ID; Jack, Derek and Sam Schaefer, Missoula; Braden and Kellen Schaefer, Eagle, ID; Christopher and Rileigh Schaefer, Helena; Cleo and Iris Fowler, San Francisco, CA; Mia Stelling, Helena and Jack Kelly, Glen, as well as many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, Phoebe, brothers and sisters, Duke, Chuck, Helene and Frieda.

Due to Covid 19, no services are planned at this time. Memorials can be made in his name to the American Lung Association.
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