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Obituary - Francis "Wells" Lamey

F. "Wells" Lamey, 86, peacefully passed away of natural causes on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015, at the Northern Montana Care Center.

Cremation has taken place, and vigil services will be held at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, at St. Jude Thaddeus Catholic Church. Memorial Mass will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015, also at St. Jude, with Father Daniel Wathen officiating.

Wells' family has requested that memorials be made to the Wells Lamey Memorial Scholarship Fund or to the charity of the donor's choice.

Holland & Bonine Funeral Home has been entrusted with services and arrangements.

Please visit Wells' online memorial page and leave a message of condolence for his family at http://www.hollandbonine.com.

Francis "Wells" was born on Oct. 25, 1929, in Havre, to Peter and Isabell Wells Lamey. His mother passed away before his fifth birthday, resulting in him and his brother Clint being split up amongst relatives to be raised. He relocated to various families throughout his childhood, finally ending up with the Powelson family, who took extremely good care of him.

Wells attended grade school at St. Jude's Catholic School, where two of the priests, Father Heron and Father Logan, had a profound impact in his life. He enjoyed being an altar boy, and Father Heron would take Wells with him to serve Mass at Hays, Box Elder and Big Sandy. Father Logan, who was also a pitcher on a local softball team, had a subscription to the Sporting News. Father Logan would allow Wells to read the subscription with one caveat: Wells would be quizzed on the content of the paper, having to answer the questions correctly in order to get the next edition. It was this influence that turned Wells into a voracious reader of the paper. He read the paper from cover to cover his entire adult life.

Wells graduated from Havre High School in 1947. He enjoyed high school, and was always telling stories of the many wonderful friendships that were forged there, most of them lifetime to this day. No one enjoyed a class reunion, or talking to former classmates, more than Wells.

After high school, he did a brief stint at the railroad and Northern Montana College. He then enrolled in the U.S. Army, where he was stationed at Fort Lewis, Washington. He was honorably discharged from the Army in 1949.

Wells attended Montana State University, which is now the University of Montana, in Missoula. While in college, he drove bus and worked part-time at Missoula Drug to help pay for school. He resided in a basement apartment on Eddy Avenue, which he would fondly point out each time he walked to see his beloved Grizzlies play. Wells graduated second in his class from the pharmacy school in 1955.

After college, Wells moved back to Havre, where he worked as a pharmacist at Don's Medical Pharmacy. This was a perfect job, as it allowed him to constantly talk to the public and help people. He never met a person he didn't want to help. After standing on his feet behind the counter for 36 years, his knees were just worn out, and he retired.

While at a dance in Havre, Wells met Joan Gorman of Chinook, a woman who would become the love of his life. Wells and Joan were married on June 30, 1956, in Chinook and remained married until Wells' passing.

Other than his family, two joys in Wells' life were sports and giving back to the community he dearly loved. He played softball, and was a member of the Seel's 1959 state championship fast pitch softball team. He was also one of the founders of Babe Ruth baseball in Havre, and would often talk of the first players in that league.

After retirement, Wells made up for lost time in watching sporting events. It didn't matter if it was a fifth-grade tiddlywinks contest, he would attend any event he could. One of his biggest joys was talking to the young people after an event, and giving encouraging words to whoever would listen. He also enjoyed listening to elementary school students read to him, and the lasting effect he had on many students was a source of great pride.

In 1996, Wells was honored with the Founder's Excellence Award from Montana State University-Northern for his efforts to advance MSU-N in the community. He was a charter member of the Havre Public Schools Education Foundation Board of Directors, where he served in this capacity from 2000 until 2007. In 2001, Wells was given the Dr. Jim Elliott memorial award by the Blue Pony Booster Club, in recognition of his support of the Blue Pony activities. He was given the Healthy Communities/Healthy Youth Asset Builder Award. In 2004, he was inducted into the MSU-Northern Hall of Fame for his dedicated service. In 2005, he was given the North Star Award from the Havre Area Chamber of Commerce for his never-ending support of the Havre community.

Wells was preceded in death by his parents Peter and Isabell Lamey, and his brother, Clint Lamey.

He is survived by his beloved wife, Joan, of Havre; his sons, Bill (Carol) Lamey of Havre and Kevin (Paula) Lamey of Missoula; his three grandchildren, Josh, Alex and Jace; his four step-grandchildren, Chris, Brandi (Ryan), Grant and Joe; his four great-grandchildren, Jaden, Alexxys, Owen and Iyla; his sister-in-law, Jo Lamey; and numerous nieces, nephews, and close friends.

 

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