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CHESTER Kenneth Raymond "Kenny" Tempel, 76, died Sunday, April 21, 2002, at a Chester hospital of natural causes.

Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Thursday at the Chester United Methodist Church. Burial will follow at the Chester Cemetery.

Kenneth was born Sept. 22, 1925, to Gus and Louise (Heyen) Tempel on the family homestead in the Alma community 20 miles northwest of Joplin. Kenny grew up on the family farm and received his formal education at the Tingdahl School near there. Following his school years, he pursued his career as a Montana farmer.

Kenneth met his wife-to-be, Lillian Marie Abrahamson, and they were married on Oct. 11, 1950, in Havre. Initially, they farmed in partnership with his brother, Ernie, in the north Joplin community. They eventually split up the land, and Kenneth and Lillian made their home on the old Dodds Keith place 23 miles north of Chester. Over the years, they raised horse, cows, pigs, sheep, dogs, cats and other farm animals. After the kids were grown, they bought a house in Chester in 1980. They commuted to and from the farm until 1989 and then officially retired.

Working as a farmer his entire life, Ken learned to be a good handyman. He could fix most anything and always kept his shop well organized. In his younger days, he enjoyed hunting. He also liked to go fishing, especially with his children and his old friend Dodds Keith. Kenny enjoyed traveling and made memorable trips to Alaska, Hawaii, Wisconsin, Michigan and the Dakotas. Other interests included gardening, playing cards, mainly pinochle, and reading farm and mechanic magazines. Henny loved his snowmobiles and four-wheelers. In his quiet time he enjoyed listening to country western music. His favorite recording artists were Hank Williams Sr., Patsy Kline and Tammy Wynette. He also enjoyed old John Wayne movies and the comedy of Red Skelton. Most of all he enjoyed visiting with family and friends. Kenny attended many auctions over the years, mainly for the social aspect of the sale.

Kenny was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Ernest Tempel; sister, Maggie Anderson.

Kenny is survived by his wife of 51 years, Lillian Tempel of Chester; daughters and their spouses, Donna Calace of Colorado Springs, Colo., Doris and Tom Koontz of Malad City, Idaho, Sally and Fran VanHoudt of Dillon, Janet and Elvin Sundgren of Chester, Karen Johnson of Chester, and Leslie and Bob Wear of Kooskia, Idaho; brother, Clinton Tempel of Great Falls; sisters, Dorothy Heydon of Bozeman and Ellen Overton of Great Falls; 16 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; many nephews and nieces.

Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel, Chester.


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