How do you condense 85 years of an exemplary life into one article?
Richard Jackson was born April 22, 1935 to Kenneth and Irene (Lincoln) Jackson in Havre. The three of them, along with his older sister Dorla, lived north of Inverness his first five years and then moved to the farm/ranch North of Rudyard which was his home for the rest of his life.
This family of four loved to vacation over near Flathead lake, snagging salmon. His early school years were at Mariner Country School north of Hingham. The rest of his schooling was at Rudyard public school. During those years he excelled in football, basketball and track and was president of the student council his senior year. After high school, he spent a short time at Northern Montana College in Havre.
He spent many years playing baseball with the community teams north of the Rudyard at “The Clubhouse”. His hard work payed off when he received an offer to join the LA Dodgers spring training camp.
He met Shirley Sherman at the Evangelical Church in Rudyard in 1953, and it was love at first sight! They were married September 18, 1955. Throughout the years their children, Shari, Shelly, Melody, Marilyn, and Kenneth, were born and made their family complete.
Richard was a wheat farmer and raised Registered Polled Herford cattle. He enjoyed hunting elk and deer, looking for dinosaur bones in the coulees, and watching sports. God and family were his highest priorities.
The last two and a half years of his life, he lived part time with his daughter, Melody, and part time with his daughter, Shelly. During this time, he loved puzzles, card games and watching TV.
He passed due to complications of congestive heart failure and Waldenstrom’s cancer at his daughter’s home in Bozeman. His favorite hymn all his life was Some Golden Daybreak . And daybreak began at 4:56 a.m. in the early morning hours of Saturday June 13, 2020---the exact moment he passed from life on this earth to his eternal life in heaven.
“Oh, what a meeting, there in the skies. No tears nor crying shall dim our eyes. Loved ones united eternally, oh, what a daybreak that morn will be.”
He was preceded in death by his father, Kenneth; mother, Irene; sister, Dorla; wife, Shirley; and granddaughter, Sharyl. He is survived by four daughters, Shari Wodrich, Shelly Graff (Don), Melody Foster (Jack), Marilyn Blunck (Eric); one son, Ken Jackson (Shannon); 16 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be Tuesday, June 16, from 5 to 7pm at Rockman Funeral Chapel. Funeral services will be held at the Calvary Evangelical Church in Rudyard on Wednesday, June 17, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. Interment at Grace Cemetery immediately following.
Memorials may be made in his name to Calvary Evangelical Church 115 2nd St NE, Rudyard, MT 59540.