Monthly Archives: December 2013

Nolan “Whiz” Beck

Died Nov. 27, 2013

A graveside service for Nolan “Whiz” Beck of Marathon, Wis., will be held Friday, Dec. 27 at 10 a.m. at the Hyattville Cemetery. Whiz died Nov. 27 after an 11-year battle with cancer.

Whiz met his wife Debbie in Hyattville in 1977 when he was working as a fishing guide in the Big Horn Mountains. They were married Aug. 5, 1978, in Ten Sleep. The couple resided in Big Rapids, Mich., where both attended Ferris State University. Whiz graduated with his bachelor’s degree in science education in 1979 and took a job in Student Services as hall director at FSU. In March of 1981 he accepted a job at the University of Wyoming where he pursued his master’s and doctorate degrees in educational administration with an emphasis on effective leadership, law and student affairs.

While residing in Laramie, Whiz joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was active and committed to the beliefs of the gospel and families.

Whiz took up officiating basketball and officiated at numerous levels, including at several Wyoming state championship games.

In 1996 the Becks moved to Wausau, Wis., where Whiz became the director of student services at UWMC. He remained active in the LDS Church.

His passion for education was always evident; he was a champion for the underdog and students who struggled in school or those who were told they would not make it. He was active in raising funds for student scholarships at UWMC and the Marathon School Foundation.

He served as bishop for the LDS Wausau Ward from 2002-2007.

Whiz retired in 2011 after more than 31 years in higher education at Ferris State College, the University of Wyoming and the University of Wisconsin-Marathon County.

He loved to hunt and fish, but both took a back seat when his two grandchildren came along.

He will be remembered for his passion for life and his optimism.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

He is survived by his wife Deborah “Debbie” Beck of Marathon; five children and their spouses, Jake and Holly Beck Montague and Travis Beck, all of Salt Lake City, Stephen and Heidi Beck Cannon of Nashville, Tenn., Tyler Beck and Troy and Jordan Beck, all of Rexburg, Idaho; one sister Brenda and her companion Ann Bouts of Victoria, Australia; two brothers and sisters-in-law, Paul and Vilma Beck of St. John, Mich., and Terry and Sherri Beck of Ashley, Mich., and two grandchildren.

Memorial donations will be used to assist three areas: the UWMC Scholarship Fund; Marathon School Foundation “Who You Are Makes a Difference” fund and the Hope Lodge in Marshfield for cancer patients and their families.


Delna June Neves Johnson

OBIT Johnson1June 9, 1917 – Dec. 15, 2013

Services for Delna June Neves Johnson, 96, will be at 10 a.m., Friday, Dec. 20, 2013, at the South Jordan River Ridge Stake located on 10194 South 1050 West, South Jordan, Utah.

Prior to the funeral a viewing will be at the church from 9 – 9:45 a.m. Interment will be at the Summit, Utah, Cemetery at 1 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013. There will also be a viewing from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 19, at Jenkins Soffe South Valley at 1007 W. South Jordan Parkway (10600 South), South Jordan, Utah.

Delna June Neves Johnson passed away peacefully in her home at Legacy Assisted Living, surrounded by family members on Dec. 15, 2013.

She was born in Burlington, to Samantha Johnson Neves and Richard Carl Neves on June 9, 1917. She married Arthur Shumway Johnson March 20, 1937. The marriage was later solemnized in the Salt Lake LDS Temple.

Delna loved her faith and lived it every day of her life. One of her greatest joys was to go to the temple every Friday with her friends. She served in many positions from primary teacher to Relief Society presidency.

Her family was her greatest joy. Loved by all who were lucky enough to call her mom or grandma or “gramma grape.” She was such a joy to us all.

Her beautiful crocheting was enjoyed by most everyone who came in contact with her. Not long after she got to know someone they had a crochet blanket or potholder in their possession. She was loved by everyone that knew her. She made so many friends everywhere she lived, from Wyoming to Sandy, to Summit to South Jordan, Utah, and finally Legacy Assisted Living.

She is survived by sister Carla Loveland; children, Jeanne and Ray Lee-Sarinana, Buck and Laura Johnson, Richard and Roxana Johnson, Gerald and Annie Johnson, Judith and Neils Johnson-Knudsen, Bill Johnson, Kathy Bouck (Glen), Robert Johnson (Mary), and Kelli Grim (Todd); 34 grandchildren and numerous great- and great-great-grandchildren.

Preceded in death by her beloved husband; mother and father; grandson Doug Johnson; three brothers and five sisters.

In lieu of flowers, Delna has asked for donations to the missionary fund. Online condolences may be made at

Paul Herren

April 1, 1938 – Dec. 16, 2013

A graveside service for Paul Herren, 75, of Greybull, will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 20 at the Odessa Cemetery at Shell with Pastor James Scott officiating.  Paul died Dec. 16 at the RiverStone Health Hospice Home in Billings, Montana.

Paul was born on April 1, 1938, in Shell, the son of Hans Herren and Frieda Sophia (Wright) Herren.  He grew up in the Big Horn Basin and received his schooling at the old stone schoolhouse in Shell.

He worked for Tillman “Tim” Graham and learned to operate a Cat.  He went on to work for M-I SWACO as a heavy equipment operator for twenty years.  Paul loved riding horses, “cowboying” and gardening.  He enjoyed traveling the back roads with friends and visiting with family and friends.  He was a “true” friend and enjoyed life to its fullest.  Paul lived his life in this valley and never got away from “his” mountains.

Paul is preceded in death by his parents.

He is survived by his three children, June Rose (Herren) Dickinson of Riverton, Robert Grant Herren of Greybull, and Marilynn (Herren) Tritschler of Dayton; seven grandchildren; three brothers, Roy Herren of Billings, Harry Herren of Greybull, and Johnny Herren of Greybull, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Burial at the Odessa Cemetery will follow the Dec. 20 funeral service.  A reception for family and friends will then follow at the Shell Community Hall.



Hansen is Holidazzle grand marshall

by marlys good

Marion Hansen, owner of the Uptown Café, has been selected as the grand marshal of the 2013 Holidazzle parade.

“She was very surprised,” said Hansen‘s daughter, Joni when her mother was presented with a bouquet of flowers, a plaque and sash Monday afternoon, “but she knew something was going on when I made her come back to the restaurant at 2 p.m.”

Marion Hansen has been a fixture at Uptown Café for years. She was a fixture when it was Parker’s Café, and she worked for then owner Chuck Shirran as a cook, a waitress, you name it.

“She went back to work waiting tables to put me through beauty school,” Joni said. “She told me she didn’t think I would ever graduate,” she laughed. That was years ago and Hansen is still “working;” she just changed hats.  Twenty years ago she purchased the café from Cass Bush, and went from employee to employer.

Changing hats didn’t lessen her hours. Day in, day out, year after year, Hansen has been there. She suffered a heart attack – but was back at work the very next day. Joni said her main reason for purchasing the business was to “give local people jobs” and the business flourished. “We were so busy,” Joni said.

Hansen was a good employer. “She was a great boss, she treats employees with respect and kindness. You have to do something really bad to have her come down on you,” according to her granddaughter Sara.

Then came the controversial reconstruction of Greybull Avenue. Business plummeted and it has been difficult to recover.

Hansen’s son John “has pretty much taken over the business end of the restaurant,” according to Joni, but her mother is still a fixture.

The “grand marshal” said she has loved “the repeat customers, the hunters, bikers, geologists. They became  friends.”

One thing you were sure of. Stop at the Uptown anytime after Thanksgiving and you’d hear Christmas music playing softly in the background. It was a tradition, and Hansen never let the tradition slide.

Thinking back on the dozens of years and thousands of hours spent at Parker’s, then Uptown, Hansen said, “I would do it all over again.”

The honor bestowed on Hansen by the Greybull Area Chamber of Commerce and Town of Greybull, “brightened her day,” according to both daughter and granddaughter.


Lots to do on Holidazzle Saturday

by nathan oster

Downtown Greybull will be transformed into a winter wonderland for Saturday’s Holdazzle celebration, which runs from 4:30 to 7 p.m.

Sponsored by the Greybull Area Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Greybull, the event features special events from one end of Greybull Avenue to the other.

In the 300 block there will be face painting, a hot chocolate bar, live Christmas music and a CMA Christmas lounge.

One block down, in the 400 block, Midway Clinic will have a booth. Randy Waddell’s Eye Care for You office will be offering Christmas glasses, Community Outreach will be accepting items for the VA hospital in Sheridan, and there will be a fire pit and s’mores in front of C.C.’s.

Jolly Ol’ St. Nick himself will be hanging out in the 500 block, plus there will be a fishing pond, cotton candy stand, chestnuts roasting on an open fire, a book walk and Christmas coupons at Probst.

In the 600 block, there will be a coffee tasting event at the Historic Hotel Greybull, a free chili dinner in the former Dollar Store building, a Spanish community piñata, and a Christmas light show in the planter.

For those interested in the Holidazzle light parade, look for it at 5:15 p.m.

Prize drawings will take place at 6:40 p.m. at the gazebo in front of the Historic Hotel Greybull.

A complete schedule appears on page 5.




Line break turns out the lights

by nathan oster

There is no such thing as a good time for a power outage, but the one that sent local residents scurry for back-up heat sources during the early morning hours on Friday came at one of the worst possible times of the year.

The Big Horn Basin, and for that matter all of Wyoming, has been in a deep freeze over the last 7 to 10 days, with the mercury rarely if ever climbing above zero during this frigid stretch of early December.

So when the power went out Friday morning at 3:42 a.m., it caused widespread panic.

The temperate at the time, as measured at the South Big Horn County Airport and recording on the website of the National Weather Service, was -15.  If you factor in a 3-mile per hour wind, it was even colder.

When word was received from Rocky Mountain Power that the power would likely be off until around 8:30 or 9 a.m., town and school officials took action.

The school district pushed the scheduled start of the school day back by two hours to 10 a.m.

Over at Town Hall, Police Chief Bill Brenner said officers spent all of the time patrolling, looking for people who were outside and looking for help, while Paul Thur, the town’s administrator, and town foreman Dalen Davis, fired up the generator at the Herb Asp Community Center, thinking it would be a warm place for people to go.

No one took advantage of it by actually going to the community hall, but Thur said it was a good drill, and one that was especially valuable because it tipped off the folks at the South Big Horn Senior Center that their generator was not working properly. Brenner said it was a quite couple of hours, with no disturbances reported, until the power was restored at 7:11 a.m.

Jeff Hymas, a spokesman for Rocky Mountain Power, said the outage affected close to 1,360 Rocky Mountain Power customers in Greybull and was caused by a downed power line just outside one of the company’s substations, known as the Nahne Jensen substation, near Greybull.

Hymas said the cold weather “was a contributing cause to that downed power line,” as the wind and cold apparently caused the line to break.  Rocky Mountain repair crews were able to get the line repaired, working through the subzero temperatures.

When the power came back on shortly after 7 a.m., the temperature at the airport was still hovering around -15, according to the NWS website.

Thur said he would be meeting with the town’s emergency management coordinator, Ernie Smith, in the coming days to discuss the emergency management plan and in particular, what it says about power outages and where people should look for relief.

Hymas went a step further, encouraging people to prepare for the worst.

“There’s always the potential for power outages, whether it’s because of bad weather, vehicle accidents or other causes, so it’s good to be prepared,” he said. “There’s a lot of good information on our website ( for preparing in advance and staying safe during an outage.

“I’d encourage everyone to review that information, put together an outage kit and have supplies on hand that would make an outage less inconvenient.”




Chapter F PEO participates in pillow campaign

by nathan oster

It’s been a busy stretch for members of the Chaper F PEO organization.

Not only did they plan and carry out the Little Shoppers on Saturday, but they also responded to a challenge put to them by Marguerite Van Dyke to expand their philanthropic efforts in the community.

The organization’s 35 members produced 40 pillows that will be delivered to the Ronald McDonald House in Billings later this week.

They did it through the “Benjamin Smiles” program, which honors the memory of Benjamin Mollett and was established by his parents, Arnold and Vicki Mollett, who reside in Cody.

Benjamin was diagnosed with cancer on Christmas Eve in 1998 and died the day before Thanksgiving in 1999. The family spent most of that year, at least when Benjamin wasn’t hospitalized, at the Ronald McDonald House in Salt Lake City.

Vicki did a lot of sewing that year, including a quilt and a pillow for Benjamin.

“He picked out the fabrics and he loved bright, funky fabrics,” according to the Benjamin Smiles website. “He would have me make pillows for his friends. A small pillow, something to hold onto, but capable of many washings, is a great gift for a sick child.”

The Mollets said on the site that they realize the heartache that childhood cancer brings to many and that their desire is to be able to spread Benjamin’s smiles across the country with the little pillows.






Katherine “Kay” Gilbert

Oct. 26, 1916 – Nov. 14, 2013

A private family memorial for Katherine “Kay” Braden Gilbert was held in Oregon. Kay, 97, passed away Nov. 14 in Gresham, Ore.

Kay was born Oct. 26, 1916, in Independence, Iowa, the daughter of Web and Leta Braden. The Bradens moved to Greybull early in their marriage (Web’s mother was one of the founders of the First Presbyterian Church in Greybull).

Kay grew up and received her education in Greybull and graduated from Greybull High School. She attended Colorado A&M and graduated with a degree in education.

She married Lowell “Gil” Gilbert. After she moved to Oregon she became a teacher and was recognized for her outstanding talent and contributions. She taught fourth grade for several years and then focused on the second grade. She loved the interaction with the children, their enthusiasm and her joy came from watching them learn and succeed.

Kay was an excellent seamstress. Although one of her daughters preferred pants and cowboy boots, Kay saw to it that she was always in a beautiful little dress for Sunday school.

She loved to travel and she and Gil traveled to almost every state, to all the continents (except Antarctica) and to several countries on each continent.

She loved her family, her friends and meeting new people. Music and dancing were a big part of her life. Kay grew up with a deep faith and was truly thankful for the blessings she enjoyed and shared through her life.

The way Kay lived her life and the example she set left a lasting impact on those who were privileged to know her.

She is survived by her husband of 56 years, Gil; two daughters, Coralee Nockles and Renee Bankston; her son, Kent Reedy, and five grandsons.

Leroy Owen Beckwith

Jan. 22, 1934 – Dec. 9, 2013

Funeral services for Leroy Owen Beckwith will be Monday, Dec. 16 at 10 a.m. at the First Baptist Church in Basin. Leroy, 79, died Oct. 9 at a hospice in Laurel, Mont.

He was born Jan. 22, 1934, in Basin, the son of Leroy Louis and Dorothea Johnson Beckwith. The family moved several times, but ended up back in Basin where Leroy completed his education and graduated from Basin High School.

Leroy married Helen Edith Reno on Oct. 30, 1955, in Powell.

He joined the United States Navy in January 1955. After graduating from boot camp he was transferred to the Naval Air Station in Glenview, Ill., as part of the Naval Air Reserve Training Program. He served at Shore Commands in Colorado Springs, San Diego, Washington, D.C. and Fallon, Nev. His Sea Commands included the USS Saratoga, USS El Dorado, USS Estes, USS Valley Forge and USS Sacramento. He also served an Overseas Command in St. Johns, Newfoundland.

Leroy retired from the Navy in 1975 and went to work for the VA Medical Center in Sheridan in the nursing, fire and grounds departments. He retired in October 1990.

Leroy and Helen served with the Mobile Missionary Assistance Program at various evangelical camps, churches and retreat centers throughout the United States.

He was a member of the First Baptist Church in Basin, the U.S. Naval Reserve Association, and the National Rifle Association.

His parents and his wife Helen preceded him in death.

He is survived by his daughters and sons-in-law, Jody and Tina Beckwith Rowan, of Ellensburg, Wash., and Germann and Jody Beckwith Hoebelheinrich of Sheridan; son and daughter-in-law Jeffrey and Marilyn Beckwith of Longview, Wash.; sister, Sybil Hannah of Thermopolis; two brothers, Larry Edward Beckwith of Lander, and Robert Eugene Beckwith of Sheridan; six grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Burial with military honors will be in Mount View Cemetery. A luncheon for family and friends will be held at the First Baptist Church immediately following the graveside service.

Memorial donations can be sent to the National Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, Petroleum Building, Suite 103, 111 West Second St., Casper, WY 82601 in memory of those who have MS, including Leroy’s wife Helen.


George F. Greene

OBIT GreeneOctober 1934 – November 29, 2013

George F. Greene, age 79, died at the Davis Hospice Center in Cheyenne, Wyo., on Friday, November 29, 2013. George was the youngest of four children born to William D. and Zella B. (Forbes) Greene (Peavler). He married the love of his life, Donna Mae (Ziemke) Greene, on June 25, 1951.

George was known for his strong viewpoints. He loved sharing his pragmatic view of life with anyone he came into contact with. His insights and blunt advice will be missed by all but mostly by his children and grandchildren. As George’s illness progressed, the phone became his social outlet. He’d chuckle when solicitors would call, and he could fill their day with a questionable story, flirt with a soft voice, or question the product they were offering. He would then count the number of times the solicitor would call again just to say hello and check on him.

George had many deep passions in life: dancing with his wife Donna, lending a helping hand to those who needed one, and hunting and fishing with family and friends. Once, he was pictured in the Greybull Standard holding four German Brown trout, each nearly 30 inches long. When asked how he caught them, he said he was using his favorite Thomas lure. Years later, he admitted he had a little non-traditional help. He would often recall his favorite hunting experience of riding his horse, Lightning, into a herd of elk on Willet Creek with his 1894 Winchester .32 caliber. It was a productive day.

He was an accomplished flint knapper, arrowhead hunter, teller of tall tales, and a true outdoorsman at heart. He taught his grandchildren to look for broken arrowhead points 30-40 feet from an Indian fire ring because that was the general throwing range. Each of his points is a signed work of art and a cherished treasure to those who were fortunate enough to receive one.

George was an active bird watcher. Although he was hard on the neighboring peacocks, he would provide more than 40 pounds of bird seed in a given week to ensure the wild birds in his neighborhood were well fed.

George was employed as a heavy equipment operator with M&I Drilling for more than 25 years, an independent roofing contractor, and an avid trapper. Much to the chagrin of those around him, he caught nearly 500 skunks in one season.

George is survived by his three sons: Mike (Cheryl) of Shell, Wyo.; Steve (Shirley) of Billings, Mont.; and James (De Anna) of Cheyenne, Wyo.; grandchildren: Nikole and her children, Dade and Izak, of Greybull, Wyo.; Trenton and his daughter, Reese, of Lone Tree, Colo.; Shadd and his daughter, Jadyn, of Cheyenne, Wyo.; Shane of Greybull, Wyo.; Wendy of Cheyenne, Wyo.; Mark of Corvallis, Ore.; and Kevin of San Francisco, Calif.; brother: Kenneth (Red) Greene of Idaho Falls, Idaho; and several nieces and nephews.

George is preceded in death by his wife, Donna Mae (2012); granddaughter, Tereasa (1978); parents, William D. Greene (1974) and Zella Peavler (1968); step-mother, Eva (2010); brother, William (2012); sister, Lois; and in-laws, Elaine (2003) and Lee Andrews (1997) and Floyd Farr.

Cremation has taken place with a celebration of his life to be held at Grouse Creek in June 2014.