HINGHAM - Robert Joseph "Bob" Blake Sr. died Sunday, Jan. 25, 2004, at the Chester rest home. He was 97.

Cremation has taken place. A memorial service with burial of ashes is planned for later this spring at the Highland Cemetery

in Havre.

Bob was was born Sept. 3, 1906, at Maybass, N.D. He was the youngest of five sons born to Frank and Mary (Diermer) Blake. Bob's mother died when he was 8 years old, so he was raised by the Monroe family. He received his formal education at a country school near Fairfax, N.D., then began working as a laborer.

Bob came to Montana in 1929 to work on a thrashing crew for Moonlight Wilson at Kremlin. He liked the area, so he took a job as a mechanic for Sorenson-Sedivy Ford Garage in Hingham.

He married Louise Norenberg on Jan. 16, 1932. They made their home in Hingham and began raising their family of three. In the mid-1930s Bob took a temporary job with the WPA. He eventually purchased a small farm 15 miles north of Hingham and operated it until his retirement in 1968, when he leased it to a son, Robert Jr.

His wife died in 1986. Bob remained in the Hingham community until 1994, when his health began to fail. He moved to the personal-care wing at Liberty County Hospital, then later transferred to the nursing facility, where he lived for 10 years.

Bob was a longtime member of Hingham Lutheran Church, where he assisted with many remodeling projects. He was a member of the Hingham Oddfellows Club. During his retirement years, he enjoyed socializing and playing pool with friends at the Rudyard Senior Center.

His hobbies included hunting, fishing, bowling, reading and gardening. He also enjoyed traveling and camping with his wife and friends. He was good with carpentry skills and cabinetry work.

His survivors include two sons, Donald (Rachel) Blake of Cascade and Roger Blake of Missoula; 10 grandchildren; several great-grandchildren; and numerous nephews and nieces.

Bob was preceded in death by his wife, Louise, and his parents; a son, Robert Jr., and four brothers, Lee, Martin, McKenzie and George.

Arrangements were by Rockman Funeral Chapel of Chester.


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