HAYS - Benjamin Paul "Benito" Lodge, 78, whose Gros Ventre Indian name Na-Gya-Nee-Da-Ya means Cloud Chief, died Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2003, at a Havre hospital due to natural causes.
A funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in St. Paul's Recreation Center with military burial honors at Roadside Cemetery. A wake and rosary will begin today
at 7 p.m. in St. Paul's Recreation Center.
Ben was born on Jan. 1, 1925, at Fort Belknap Hospital to Fred and Pauline (Big Horse) Lodge. He attended schools in Oklahoma and graduated from Chemewa High School in Chemewa, Ore.
Ben served in the U.S. Army during World War II as a medical technician. He returned to Fort Belknap, where he worked as a firefighter for Forestry, worked on farms and ranches, did carpenter work and did various jobs for the senior citizens center at Fort Belknap in the Green Thumb program. Ben was also involved with the Hays Senior Citizens Center where he made a lot of good friends.
Ben enjoyed cooking, attending and videotaping powwows, listening to powwow music, playing bingo, playing horseshoes and cribbage, and taking Polaroid pictures of family and friends. Ben enjoyed helping at branding and fishing.
He was a resident of Northern Montana Care Center since 1999.
Ben was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers and one sister.
Survivors include his sisters, Birdie Mae Shortman and Annabelle Thomas, both of Hays, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Arrangements are by Edwards Funeral Home of Chinook.