HARLEM - Joshua Thomas Raven Chief (Kuxi Hunpa) Rutherford, 28, a Blaine County deputy sheriff, died on Thursday, May 29, 2003, after responding to a domestic disturbance.

A wake and rosary was Sunday at the Fort Belknap Agency in the Red Whip Recreation Center. A funeral Mass was this morning at the Harlem High School gymnasium

with the Rev. Joseph Retzel, S.J., officiating.

Joshua was born on Aug. 16, 1974, in Denver, Colo. He was educated at Edgewater Elementary School, Wheat Ridge Junior High School and Harlem High School. He graduated in 1993, lettering in football and wrestling. He was a member of the National Honor Society and Aises. He attended the University of Montana.

Joshua married Roberta King on June 19, 1993. Two sons, Thomas Michael and Joshua Teague, both of Dodson, were born to this marriage. Josh and Roberta later divorced, but remained partners.

Joshua married Jennifer Johnson on Feb. 14, 1999. Two sons, Matthew Clark and Michael Walter, both of Las Vegas, N.M., were born to this marriage.

Joshua had two loves - his children and being a law enforcement officer. Following in his father's footsteps, he became a law enforcement officer at the Hill County Detention Center. He then was employed by the Harlem Police Department where after three months he became the chief of police. In February 2000 he became a deputy with the Blaine County Sheriff's Office. He was a state-certified instructor, teaching defensive tactics at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy in Helena.

He was an expert marksman. He was eager and willing to learn new things. He was a certified First Responder, a breath test specialist, a certified school resource officer and a Hitman master instructor. He was a loving son and a best father, husband, brother, cousin, nephew, brother-in-law, son-in-law, wrestler, co-worker, grandson, friend and "Inktomini."

Joshua was preceded in death by his grandparents, Maxine Bigby Brown, Walter Magpie, Pete Matthews; and his much loved uncle, PeeWee Magpie.

Survivors include his sons, Thomas, Teague, Matthew and Michael; wife, Jennifer; friend, Roberta King; mother, Maxine Magpie Clifford; father, Mike Matthews; sisters, Tammy Rider, Jody Rutherford and Angela Matthews; brothers, Lewis Rutherford and Sean Cherichigno; grandmothers, Esther Dumont and Ruby Rasor; great-grandmother, Theresa Walker; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and nieces.


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