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CORVALLIS - William (Bill) Stewart filed his final flight plan and soared up to meet his Master in Heaven on Thursday, May 3, 2018 surrounded by his family.
William Chester Stewart (Bill) was born February 12, 1938 in Brookings, South Dakota to Ileen and Norval Stewart. His family settled in the Three Mile Area outside of Stevensville when Bill was a young lad and he attended Lone Rock School. Bill's father became ill and the family moved to Iowa to be near medical treatment.
Bill went to high school in Anamosa, Iowa and there met his sweetheart, Judith Fowler. He joined the US Army Reserves in 1957. Bill was honorably discharged on March 24, 1964. On May 2, 1958, Bill and Judith were married and began their lifelong journey returning to Montana, the place Bill called his only home.
Bill became interested in aviation at an early age when he got a ride in a Jenny in Missoula. While in Iowa, Bill began his flying career. Throughout his career, he logged over 15,000 hours, mostly over the mountains of Montana.
Bill and Judy owned and operated North Star Aviation for over 20 years. During that time, Bill flew for the Montana Fish and Game, The Nez Perce Indians, the US Forest Service and various dude ranches in the Selway Wilderness.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Sonny; sisters, Barbara Sourbrine and Dixie Page; brother-in law, Jack Fowler; grandson, Eric Anderson; and nephew, Ivan Buhler.
Surviving Bill are his wife of 60 years, Judith at the family home in Corvallis; daughters, Melodie Stewart of Corvallis, Elizabeth Stewart of Corvallis and Marianne (Tomas) Kern of Stevensville; grandchildren, Brandi Stewart of Redmond, WA, Chellsi (Brandon) James and children, Anthony and Kennedi of Snoqualmie, WA, Kailah (Christopher) Van Note and children, Titus, Annalisa and Adelynne of Manhattan, MT, Christie Kern of Stevensville, Hailey Stewart of Afton, WY and Abby Stewart of Hamilton. Also surviving are sisters, Wanda Burkhart, Penny Stone and Pamela Stewart all of Hamilton; brothers-in-law Robert (Andrea) Fowler of Corvallis, Dale Burkhart of Hamilton, George Tompkins of Hamilton, Richard Sourbrine of Victor and Dennis Stone of Troy; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held on Monday, May 7, 2018 from 5:00 until 7:00 pm at the Daly-Leach Chapel. Funeral services will be held Tuesday, May 8th at 11 am at the United Methodist/American Baptist Church on 211 North 6th Street in Hamilton with burial to follow at Riverview Cemetery. There will be a reception following the committal services back at the church.
The family would like to thank Todd and Gael Page, Brenda Morasko, the dedicated staff at the Bee Hive Home and Marcus Daly Hospice for their kindness and devotion to Bill during his brave battle. Condolences may be left for the family at www.dalyleachchapel.com.