HAMILTON – Chellis Newgard, a real good guy, left this world in the early morning hours of January 10, 2020. He was the first child of Howard and Ruth (Gould) Newgard, born October 17, 1932 at his grandparents' home in Pablo Montana. He and his close sister, Lorna Tougas, grew up on the family ranch in Pablo, and together they graduated from the Ronan high school in 1952.
Chellis went into the U.S. Army, June 11, 1954, and was given an honorable discharge on May 29, 1956, with the rank of PFC in Artillery. While in the service he received the National Defense Service Metal, Army of Occupation Medal (Germany), and the Marksman Medal. He spent 18 months of his service time in Germany. He was also on the Army Battalion boxing team.
After his discharge, Chellis went to work as an Apprentice Lineman for Mountain States Telephone and Telegraph Co. He joined the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union #44 in Butte, Montana, and was a working member for 40 years. He began his career as a lineman working on a construction crew moving lines in Yellowstone Park. In 1957 the crew moved to Thompson Falls to re-locate lines for the Noxon Rapids Dam Reservoir.
That summer he met a girl in Thompson Falls named Elise Soule, they dated that summer and were married September 7, 1957. Working on a construction crew meant a lot of moving for the young couple. After 82 moves Chellis took employment in Missoula with the Montana Power Company, April of 1964, and in 4 months transferred to Hamilton. The family settled into a new home on Mother’s Day weekend in 1966, where the couple enjoyed raising their family and living for the rest of their lives. Elise passed from life on May 10, 2015, which was also Mother’s Day for that year.
Chellis is survived by his sister; Lorna Tougas of Pablo, 4 children; Roberta (Allen) Burruss of Corvallis, Christina (Wes) Glasser of Connor, Charles Newgard of Hamilton, and Myrna (Mike) Noah of Bozeman, 12 Grandchildren, and 12 Great Grandchildren. Services honoring his life, will be held on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020 at 1 p.m. at the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Hamilton, 328 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton. Internment will take place at Riverview Cemetery.
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