By Patrick Winderl/Havre Daily Newsemail@example.com
Two local women were killed Sunday in a one-vehicle accident near Big Sandy.
The women were identified as Jennifer Lynn DeCouteau, 28, of Rocky Boy and Angie Faye Swan of Havre. Swan turned 24 on Sunday.
A passenger in the vehicle - 23-year-old Leon Russette of Havre - was injured. He was discharged Monday from Benefis East in Great Falls, a spokeswoman for the hospital said today.
The wreck Sunday was the second fatal crash in less than a week in north-central Montana.
Ronald Francis "Super" Doney, 52, was killed Thursday in a single-vehicle accident on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation.
Gary Doney of Fort Belknap, who is Swan's uncle and Ronald Doney's cousin, said Swan was related to Ronald Doney by marriage. Her ex-husband is Doney's cousin, he said.
Ronald Doney was born Aug. 27, 1950. He graduated from high school in North Dakota where he was a standout athlete. In 1969 he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served three years with a sniper company in Vietnam, according to his family. After leaving the military with a 100 percent disability, he moved to Montana, where he worked until his death.
His jobs included working as a Fort Belknap law enforcement officer and a tribal firefighter. He enjoyed dancing and attending powwows, his family said. He was a talented musician and recorded several country and gospel records.
"He used to play at a lot of wakes. He was quite the musician," Gary Doney said.
Doney said losing two relatives has been devastating.
"It's been really hard," he said. "It's been difficult on everyone."
Swan was born in Havre on June 22, 1979, to Clifford and Marjorie Swan. She was raised and attended school in Rocky Boy and Harlem. Her jobs included working as a nurse's assistant, a maid and a waitress.
Swan had a daughter, De'on Swan of Havre, and two sons, Colten Small of Havre and Isaiah Doney of Fort Belknap.
"She was always happy," her uncle said. "She was always trying to help people."
DeCouteau was born Feb. 17, 1975, in Havre to Raphael DeCoteau and Kathy Sutherland. She graduated from Rocky Boy High School in 1993 and married Virgil Chiefstick later that year. The couple had two daughters: Kaycee, 8, and Krista, 6. The two later separated, according to her family. DeCouteau worked for the Rocky Boy Health Board as a personal care attendant.
"She liked being with family and friends," Sutherland said today. "She just enjoyed being around people and spending time with her daughters."
A wake service for DeCouteau began at 4 p.m. Monday at the Rocky Boy Catholic Church. A wake service for Swan will begin today. A funeral service for both women will be held at the church Wednesday at 11 a.m. with Marvin Russette officiating. Burial will follow at the Rocky Boy Cemetery.
DeCouteau, Swan and Russette were ejected from a 1991 Pontiac Grand Am during a rollover along U.S. Highway 87 about 4:35 p.m. Sunday, the Montana Highway Patrol said. They were not wearing seat belts.
DeCouteau was driving north when the vehicle drifted off the right side of the highway, the patrol said. She steered back to the left and overcorrected, causing the vehicle to enter a clockwise spin. The car skidded off the right side of the road and rolled, according to the patrol.
Speed was a factor, the patrol said.
Ronald Doney was killed about 6 p.m. Thursday along Fort Belknap East Route 129. The 2000 GMC pickup he was driving skidded in loose gravel off the left side of the road and rolled, the Highway Patrol said. He was ejected from the passenger window and died at the scene.