Joel Frost, 87, of Tustin, CA, passed on November 8, 2022 at Great Falls Peace Hospice from mesothelioma. He was born in Big Timber, MT on March 14, 1935 to Joe and Mansie Frost.
Joel graduated from high school in Sunburst where he excelled in the classroom and where his love of sports flourished on the playing fields of baseball, football, and on the gym floor for the Refiners basketball teams. He attended Montana State University as an engineering student and as an athlete. He participated in football, basketball, and baseball during his freshman year for the Bobcats. He once stated that his dream of competing against the nation’s best was dashed when their team played against the College of Idaho and the future Hall of Fame player, Elgin Baylor (of LA Lakers fame). Elgin scored 45 points and Joel knew then that he didn’t have the talent to compete against the at excellence. After two years as a Bobcat, Joel transferred to Rocky Mountain College, continued to play on sports teams, finished his degree, and married Jeanette Lund.
The next step for Joel was to accept a teaching and coaching position in Poplar, MT. In fall, the Poplar Indians had less than 30 kids show up for fall football practice. Under Joel’s guidance, the football team the following year had over 70 kids show up for the season. He enjoyed a 4-year tenue as a coach for football, basketball and track, along with coaching alongside his friend, Mike Granbois.
Joel decided to discontinue his teaching/coaching career and moved the family back to Kevin, MT to help support the family business, Frost Fertilizer and Construction. Along with supporting family business, Joel volunteered his time supporting the local grade school as a mentor and coach of baseball, flag football, and basketball teams for the Kevin Eagles. Not only did he volunteer his time to coach the local kids, but he also built the baseball field with a proper backstop, dugout, and an outfield fence. He also carved a football field for flag football out of the prairie. Comments post death from kids that were influenced by Joel have been “he was my hero” and “Joel taught me more about sports than anyone else I’ve known…I try to teach the same to my grandkids.”
Joel concluded his life in Tustin, CA supporting his son’s roofing and solar business. He is preceded in death by his wife, Jeanette; his parents; a sister, Karen (Gary) Phillips.
Survivors include children, Kory (Cyndi) Frost of Trabuco Canyon, CA, Kevin (Pam) Frost of Fort Myers, FL, and Janae (Aaron) Bliss of Conrad; 7 grandchildren; 13 great grandchildren; and sister, Diana (Henry) Alme of Cut Bank.
Services are scheduled for June 15 at 4pm at Golden West Lutheran Church, 23 miles East on Sollid Road, Conrad.
Joe’s family wishes to thank his California friends, Naomi Pena, Jim and Julie Summers, and John Popa for their support and for staying in touch when Joel moved to Montana. It was deeply appreciated. A special note of appreciation to Ron Perry and Barbara Ranck Perry for the last best day at the races.