Farm Animals 09

Donald "Buff" R. Hartwell

August 6, 1948 ~ July 15, 2022 (age 73)


Donald Richard Hartwell, “Buff”, loving husband, father, and grandfather passed away unexpectedly on July 15, 2022.  He was born August 6, 1948 to Donald and Freda Hartwell in Great Falls, MT.  He attended Shelby High School and graduated in 1966.  He then attended college at Eastern Montana in Billings for one year, and swears “they” didn’t invite him back for a second. 

He enlisted in the Army National Guard on March 15, 1967 and served for six years.  He was honorably discharged on March 14, 1973 as a Sharpshooter.

His first construction job was during the building of Tiber Dam at Lake Elwell.  In 1970, he went to work in the Engineering Department for the Montana Highway Department.  He was employed there until 1979. 

During his time at the Highway Department, he met the love of his life, Peggy Christine Doughty.  They met in May 1972, and were married on November 10, 1973. 

In August 1980, Buff, Peggy, and his first born daughter, Kori, moved to the farm west of Kevin and started farming full time with his parents, Don and Freda. 

In March 1982, Buff and Peggy welcomed their new son, Kelly. 

Buff worked on the family farm and also enjoyed hauling cows and grain for many local farmers and ranchers.  Many stories could be told with his trucking buddies. 

In 2017, Buff “allegedly” retired from the farm and ranch, and then was elected Toole County Commissioner in 2019.  He enjoyed his job as a commissioner and took his position very seriously.  He worked the Commissioner position until his death. 

Buff was preceded in death by his grandparents, his mother and father, and mother and father-in-law as well as three uncles.  He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Peggy Doughty Hartwell, his daughter Kori Smith (Rod) of Billings, his son Kelly Hartwell (Tasha) of Sweetgrass, and son Tim Hartwell, two granddaughters, Fayth and Harmony and grandson, Eli.   Also surviving are four Aunts, (sisters), Dea Hustwaite, Shirlene Pflugrad, Bunny Clark and Jody Hartwell. 

Funeral services will be held at the Shelby Community United Methodist Church on July 22, 2022, at 11 AM.  Burial at Mountainview Cemetery with luncheon to follow the burial at the Church.  After the luncheon, a toast to Buff will be held at the Mint Bar in Shelby.  Please join us in celebration of his life. 

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Donald "Buff" R. Hartwell, please visit our floral store.


Funeral Service
July 22, 2022

11:00 AM
Shelby Community United Methodist Church

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