Thomas Howard Ludwig was born on May 2,1932 at the family homestead south of Rudyard. He was born to Joseph and Theresa (Velcheck) Ludwig of Rudyard, 2nd youngest of 11 children. Tom fell on Christmas Eve, and passed away peacefully on December 26, 2023 at the local Chester hospital surrounded by his wife and daughters. Tom had enjoyed a most amazing Christmas Eve Celebration in the company of his wife, his girls, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Tom attended school in Rudyard and attended University of MT and Northern MT college before graduating from Eastern MT with a BS degree in Education in 1954. He was in the US Army from 1955-1957 and spent 18 months in Okinawa as a Construction Draftsman. He was honorably discharged from the army and returned to quickly reunite and propose to the love of his life and wife, Patricia Regan Ludwig. They were happily married for over 66 years and recently celebrated that event with family. After marrying on July 20, 1957, Tom and Pat started teaching in Plentywood and came back the following summer to farm with his brothers on the family farm. They lived in Rudyard until 1970 when they moved to Chester, where they raised their 4 daughters. Jeanne was first born followed by their son, Jerry, who passed away at 11 months of age. Jackie, Jenni and Jeri quickly followed and his life as the only male in the house ensured he would never get a word in again!
Tom farmed for most of his life and filled those few spare moments during the non-farming season with construction and carpentry. He was a lifelong member of the Catholic Church. He was strong-willed and stubborn at times, but he also had an enormous heart and wonderful sense of humor. He was generous, loyal, clever and full to brim with knowledge gained through all of his life experiences. He will be remembered for all the heart and love he shared with family—he truly loved each of them. Nothing brightened his face quicker than when one of his girls or grandkids came through the door or when the whole family gathered, and he could just sit and listen to chatter and laughter.
Tom is survived by wife, Pat and his 4 girls, Jeanne (Tim) Kucera, Jackie (Jeff) Boucher, Jenni (Jeff) Chelmo and Jeri (Brian) May. He was the proud Grandpa of 10 grandchildren and many great grandchildren and step great grandchildren; his brother, Ted Ludwig; and countless nephews and nieces. He was preceded in death by his parents; his 9 siblings; his son, Jerry; and his grandson, Tommy.
His funeral will be held on Thursday, January 4, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chester.
Memorials may be designated to the Chester Garden Club Gazebo fund or Hi- Line Foundation.