Richard Ray Perry, age 84, passed away Thursday, Dec. 27, 2007, at the Wheat Country Estate in Chester of congestive heart failure.
Richard was born March 13, 1923, in Choteau to Jesse Ray and Florence May (Burch) Perry. He was raised on the ranch homesteaded by his grandparents, Fred and Alma (Gleason) Perry, and he received his formal education at Choteau Public Schools. Richard lived in Montana his entire life, except for a short time in 1943 when he worked on the Boeing Ranch in Fall City, Washington. He enjoyed oil painting and creating western & wildlife sculptures. In addition he always looked forward to a good rodeo. He worked various jobs over the years, including ranching, and had been retired for many years. Richard married Edith J. van Scherpenzeel in 1941. They had two children, Fredrick R. and Patricia A. Perry. Richard and Edith divorced in 1944. His second wife was Irene Smith, whom he married in1946. The product of this union was two sons, James Richard and David Russell. This marriage also ended in divorce. Richard’s third marriage was to Dolores E. Sommers in 1958. Two more children were added to the family, daughters Louise May and Carol Jean. The Perrys lived in Victor, Mt. before moving to Opheim. In 1976. When Dolores retired from teaching in 1988, they moved to Gildford. They had been married 46 years when Dolores died in 2004. Richard remained in Gildford until January of 2007, when he transferred to the Wheat Country Estate (assisted-living facility) in Chester. He lived there until his death. In addition to his wife and parents, Richard was preceded in death by two daughters, infant Carol Jean in 1960 and Louise Siefert in 2003; one granddaughter, Jennifer Siefert Milam in 2006; and two infant sisters. He is survived by four children, Fred Perry of Kalispell, Patricia (Jerry) Dowd of Falcon, Colo., Rick (Carol) Perry and David (Christine) Perry, both of Sedro Woolley, Wash.; one son-in-law, Bruce Siefert of Havre; eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. No formal services are planned. Richard will be buried at the Choteau Cemetery. Arrangements are being handled by the Rockman Funeral Chapel in Chester.