Richard Thomas LaSalle, 70, died Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2003, at a Havre hospital from diabetic complications.

The funeral service will be 2 p.m. today at the Van Orsdel United Methodist Church with the Rev. VaunDalee DeLong officiating. A reception will be held

at the Eagles Club immediately after the funeral service. A private graveside service will take place at a later date.

Richard was born in Havre to William "Bill" and Mabel (Wallace) LaSalle. He was raised in the Bears Paw Mountains and attended country school on Beaver Creek and Catholic school in Havre.

He married Rita Cole on Oct. 14, 1951, in Glasgow at her aunt's home. The couple lived in Glasgow and Fort Benton and later made their permanent home in and around Havre. Richard worked for Baltrusch Construction, owned and operated LaSalle Construction, and farmed and ranched south of Havre.

Richard was known variously as Dick, Little Richard, Two Bits, and Dad, Pop and Gramps. He was generous with his many friends and was adept at operating heavy equipment.

Richard enjoyed hard work, camping in Beaver Creek Park, hunting, spending time with family and friends, and discussing machinery and animals and how to fix one or the other.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Rita; grandson, Jacob; brother, Jim LaSalle; sister, Viola Crossen; and his parents.

Survivors include his sons, John (Linda) LaSalle of Box Elder, Jim LaSalle of Bend, Ore., Joe (Connie) LaSalle of Havre; daughters, Joy LaSalle and Jan Hanger, both of Havre; brother, Bob (Jenny) LaSalle of Rocky Boy; sisters, Lorraine (Bob) Ervin of Edmonds, Wash., and JoAnn (Leon) Brown of Drummond; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews; and several friends.

Memorials may be made to the Van Orsdel United Methodist Church, 410 Fifth Ave .; the North Central Senior Citizens Center, 2 W. Second St .; or the Northern Montana Cardiac Rehab Center, 20 W. 13th St., Havre, MT 59501.

Services and arrangements are under the direction of Holland and Bonine Funeral Home.


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