By HDN Staff
BIG SANDY Willis H. "Bill" Kulbeck, 86, died on Tuesday, April 9, 2002, at a Big Sandy nursing home.
It was Bill's wish to be cremated. A graveside service with burial of ashes will be planned in the near future at the Big Sandy Cemetery.
Bill was born on the family homestead northwest of Big Sandy to Walter and Elsie (Hanson) Kulbeck on March 28, 1916. Bill grew up on the farm and attended the Brownswell Country School. He finished his formal education at Big Sandy High School, then began working on the farm.
Bill married Lillian Emma Durand on Nov. 14, 1942, in Havre. They made their home on the Kulbeck farm. Bill and his brother, Neil, were partners in the farm and ranch operations. They raised registered Hereford cattle for many years. Neil died in 1980 and Bill retired in 1982. He sold the farm to sons Neil and Joel.
Following their retirement, Bill and Lillian continued to live in their farm home. When Bill's health began to fail in March 2001, he moved to a Big Sandy nursing home.
Bill was a longtime member of the American Hereford Breeder's Association and served on the Chouteau County fair board for 16 years. When his children were younger, he volunteered as a 4-H leader and served on the North Star Country School board. He enjoyed his loving family. During his retired years, Bill was an avid fan of his grandchildren in their many school and sporting activities.
Throughout his life, Bill was an excellent craftsman and carpenter. He was well-known in the community for his woodworking skills and his quality furniture. Their country home was quaint and comfortable due to Bill's personal touches and furnishings.
Bill enjoyed playing cards, especially pinochle, and solving word puzzles.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Charles and Neil; and sister, Ruth.
Survivors include his wife, Lillian Kulbeck of Big Sandy; sons, Neil of Big Sandy, Phillip and Joel of Billings, Kelly of Bozeman, and Kirby of Libby; daughter, Kathi Stromberg of Crookston, Minn.; 19 grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; sister, Marie Wilson of Rudyard; and numerous nephews and nieces.
Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel in Chester.