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Obituary - Cecil Newton Kent


Last updated 11/16/2021 at 12:09pm

Cecil Newton Kent passed away Thursday, Sept. 23, 2021, in Mesa, Arizona. He was 85.

Cecil was born August 3, 1936, in Bozeman, Montana, to Newton and Helen (Puckett) Kent. He completed high school in Bozeman and went on to what was then Montana State College. He earned his bachelor’s degree and played football at Montana State. One of his proudest accomplishments was being a member of the 1956 Golden Bobcats team, which played in the college’s first-ever national championship game. He graduated in 1960.

Cecil continued his education at Western Montana College in Dillon, Montana, where he coached football and pursued his master’s in education. While at Western he met Lois Ann Moran, a fellow student. They married in 1963 and would go on to have three children. After graduating from Western, they moved to Arlee. Cecil continued his graduate studies at University of Montana, receiving a Master of Science in kinesiology in 1968.

In the late 1960s, the family moved to Havre, Montana, where Cecil coached and taught in the Physical Education Department and, later, Education Department at Northern Montana College. He retired from NMC in 1994.

While in Havre, Cecil was an active participant in Havre Masonic Lodge No. 55, serving as its master Mason during the 1980s. He was also a member of the ADA Shrine Club and helped several families receive medical services for their children through Shriner’s Children’s Hospitals.

In 1995, Cecil and Lois retired to Townsend, Montana, where Cecil was a regular on the links at Old Baldy Golf Course, hitting balls with friends. He also loved hunting. The couple became snowbirds, spending the warmer months in Montana and wintering in Arizona.

For much of his final decade, Cecil contended with worsening dementia and moved to a memory care facility near the end of his life. He passed peacefully in the company of family.

Cecil will be remembered for his stories, which he shared with anyone who would listen. And, if you were willing to hang around, he’d tell them again — and funnier the second or third time around. He will also be remembered for his generous friendship. Cecil made friends everywhere. No one was a stranger — just a friend he hadn’t met. He would happily pitch in anywhere needed, from putting up hay to building a house to opening his home to students, family and friends in need of a place to live while they pursued their educations.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Lois; a sister, Sallie (Kent) Haley; and a nephew, Mark Haley.

He is survived by son Craig (Christine) Kent of Boerne, Texas; daughter Lori (Dom) Lauricella, of Queen Creek, Arizona; daughter Linda Kent, of Townsend, Montana; four grandchildren, Gary, Dylan, Colin, and Celia; and numerous nieces and nephews.

No funeral services are planned at this time.

Memorials in his name may be sent to Shriners Children’s Hospital.


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