The ranching community lost a well- known, loved and admired rancher on Sept. 15, 2013. Jim Pursley died due to a ranching accident on his ranch north of Chinook doing what he loved most. Funeral services will be held Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, at 11 a.m. at the St. Gabriel’s Catholic Church in Chinook. A viewing will be held from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013, at the Edwards Funeral Home in Chinook. Arrangements have been made with Edwards Funeral Home of Chinook.
He was born April 21, 1946, in Missoula, Mont. to Clarence and Lenore Pursley. Jim was raised in the Kremlin area and grew up on the family farm. He went to school in Kremlin and always commented on the fact that he graduated in the top five of his class in 1964 (there were five in the class). Jim moved north of Chinook in 1975 where he ranched for 38 years. Jim had a great eye for cattle and a love and passion for horses. He recently had purchased a 2-year-old gelding which he was fascinated with and enjoyed riding.
He married his wife, Connie Hood Elias, in 1991 and with whom he spent the next twenty two wonderful years. He enjoyed his family and friends along with the ranching way of life. Jim loved to have fun and was always up for a good prank. Jim loved little kids and was great with them. He loved to play and often would act the same age as the kids he was playing with. Jim was in the process of bringing up his next right-hand man, his great grandson Beau Merle Elias. Jim raised and molded the future of his two grandchildren Kevin and Rebecca who spent most of their time on the ranch with Jim and Connie while they were growing up.
Jim was preceded in death by his father and mother, Clarence and Lenore Pursley, along with his stepdaughter Tammie Morgan. He is survived by his wife, Connie; sister Arlene Donoven of Great Falls; niece Kay (Jim) Cavanaugh of Belgrade, Mont.; nephew Dennis (Joyce) Donoven of Kremlin, Mont.; nephew Dale Donoven of Great Falls, Mont.; niece Jan (Doug) McElvany of Arlington, Texas; stepdaughter Terry Taylor of Bozeman; grandson Kirk Taylor of Billings, Mont.; granddaughter Aubrey Enderle of Bozeman; grandson Kevin (Jen) Elias; great-grandsons Beau Elias and Ryan Meneely, great- grandaugher Alexia Elias of Chinook and granddaughter Rebecca (Phillip) Morgan; and great-grandson Ayden Fox of Havre, along with numerous great nieces and nephews. Memorials can be made to the Blaine County Emergency 1 and Blaine County Volunteer Fire Dept.