Cover photo for Robert W. Parsell's Obituary
1927 Robert 2019

Robert W. Parsell

May 4, 1927 — January 9, 2019


Robert William Parsell peacefully joined his beloved wife, Doris, in Heaven on January 9, 2019.  Bob was born on May 4, 1927 in Salt Lake City, UT to Erva Pilling and Robert Fred Parsell.

Bob grew up on the family ranch in the Sweet Grass Hills and developed an early love for the ranch that lasted all of his life.  He attended country school until he was sent to Shelby for High School.  Bob served in the Merchant Marines for two years during World War II where he was stationed on a supply ship at Guam nearby the Indianapolis when it met its tragic end.  The plight of the crew of that fateful ship has always lived in Bob’s memory.  Bob joined the Marine Corp Reserves after he returned home.  He served in the Marine Corp for an additional two years during the Korean War. After his honorable release from the military, Bob went to Provo, Utah where he earned a degree in business from Brigham Young University.  He met several lifelong friends there and has often shared stories about these friendships with his family and everyone he had the chance to visit with.  Bob met his wife, Doris Eleanor Kelly, while attending BYU.  Doris was majoring in Home Economics and had traveled to Provo from Fresno, California.  Bob and Doris were married in the Manti Temple in Utah on March 24, 1954.  Several mishaps prior to the wedding are favorite family stories such as their car being stolen and recovered in Butte, Montana and Bob falling in the irrigation ditch as they were arriving for the wedding so he had to attend in wet clothes.  Life progressed from there with Doris’s first sight of the ranch where she expected white line fences and only semi rural areas as she had seen in California but was very surprised at the remote and rugged ranch.  She did come to love the ranch and is at rest in the Gold Butte Cemetery.

Bob and Doris are survived by their 5 children, 24 grandchildren and 33 great-grandchildren, a sister, Phyllis, and many loved nieces and nephews.  David Parsell [Jessica & Taryn (Hayden, Allison); Amy; Kimberly, Carly]: Joyce and Mike Christensen [Kent & Brooke (Cohen, Cooper, Cannon, Kinsley); Karl & Valerie (Fischer, Griffin, Drake); Craig & Lori (Kylie, Brinley, Parker, Paige, Isaac); Kaylee & Nick (Rachel, Logan); Kelly & Robyn (Andie, Jaycie)]: Harold and Lenay Parsell [Jennifer & Dave (Garrett, Wyatt); Drew & Tracie; Jaci & Joe (Landon, Jaymis, Lucas); Steven]: Joan and Lance Stewart [Brice & Ingrid (Aeris, Nova, Hylas, Taysa, Anders); Kyle & Sheila (Clair, Bristol); Amanda & Chris (Caleb); Ryan & Sarah(Julie, Tommy); Keane & Leah; Derrick & Gabriella; Olivia]: Janet and Roger Lawry [Brad; Trevor; Sean; Spencer]

Bob spent his life working on the ranch and developing improvements by enhancing springs and replacing club grass.  He found joy in a bountiful wheat crop and strong healthy calves.  Bob showed great love for his family and has always had a kind and generous heart.  He loved attending all of his grandchildren’s many activities and was happy to encourage them in all of their endeavors. We will miss him dearly.

Funeral services will be held Monday January 14, 2019 at 10:00 AM at Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Days Saints in Shelby. A full lunch at the church will follow the service.

Burial with military honors will take place in Gold Butte Cemetery at 2:00 PM Monday.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Robert W. Parsell, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, January 13, 2019

6:00 - 8:00 pm (Mountain time)

Whitted Funeral Chapel, Shelby

225 6th Avenue South, Shelby, MT 59474

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Monday, January 14, 2019

Starts at 10:00 am (Mountain time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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