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CHESTER - Robert Owen "Bob" Aitken, 69, died Monday, Jan. 27, 2003, at a Chester hospital due to cancer.
Funeral service will be 2 p.m. Friday at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Chester. Burial is to follow at the Chester Cemetery.
Bob was born on July 9, 1933, at Conrad to Forrest and Inez (Palmbush) Aitken. He grew up in Conrad and received his education there. During his school years, he was active in FFA and 4-H. He graduated from Conrad High School in 1951. Bob began working as mechanic at the Ford dealership in Conrad before accepting a milk delivery route for the Vita-Rich Dairy Company in Pondera County.
Bob met Carol Mae Zehner, who had moved from Wisconsin to Montana to teach school at Conrad. They were married on June 26, 1955 at Ladysmith, Wis.
They lived in Conrad until 1959, when Vita-Rich transferred Bob to a new route in Chester. He delivered dairy products throughout Liberty County until 1965, when Vita-Rich discontinued the routes. Bob worked at the Standard Oil Gas Station in Chester for a short time, then began working as an equipment operator for Liberty County road crew. In 1977, a position opened at the town of Chester, he worked there as an operator and shop foreman until his retirement in 1995.
Bob was a longtime member of the volunteer fire department and ambulance crew at Chester, was a charter member of the Chester Lions Club and was an active Jaycee. He served on the Liberty County Credit Union and Liberty County Weed District boards and was a member of the Hi-Line Sportsman Club. In his free time, he contracted snow plowing, lawn mowing and rototilling projects and collected aluminum and metal products for recycling. He enjoyed being a good neighbor and friend. While working at the Chester landfill, Bob resurrected old bicycles and parts, then offered the equipment to those in need. His humanitarian efforts prompted his selection as Area #3 Senior Citizen of the Year.
Bob enjoyed hunting, fishing and family camping, and was a farmer at heart. He enjoyed attended the MAGGIE and antique tractor shows and stopping by the implement dealership to examine the newest equipment. He owned several antique tractors and had a collection of 1,000 toy tractors. He also collected coins and stamps, was a NASCAR and NBA fan. During his quiet time, he enjoyed hidden-word puzzles, playing cards, and watching old John Wayne war movies.
Bob was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, James.
Survivors include his wife of 47 years, Carol of Chester; daughter, Dawn (William) Hall of Chester; sons, Duane Aitken of Chester, Darrell (Joyce) Aitken of Chester, and Douglas Aitken of Ellensburg, Wash.; sister, Helen (Ralph) Stordahl of Conrad; sister-in-law, Jean Aitken of Conrad; seven grandchildren; many nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be given to the Chester swim team, VICA or a donor's choice.
Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel, Chester.