Ray was born August 16, 1924 to Theo and Reba Conard of Danvers, MT and graduated in 1942 from Fergus County High School. During World War II, he served in the Army from 1943 to 1946. After completing his tour of duty, Ray returned to Lewistown and went to work for the US Gypsum Plant. A year later, he went to work for Safeway, “just like most Lewistown boys”. He then worked for the Montana Power Company in Lewistown for forty years…first as a cashier and later as an office supervisor and credit collection manager. He was rewarded with retirement in 1988.
He was married to LaVerna Rae Miller June 25, 1949. He dedicated his life faithfully to his family, community and Zion Lutheran Church in Lewistown. He also filled in at smaller churches in the communities surrounding Lewistown when they were without a pastor. His favorite pastimes included helping others, bowling, golfing, square dancing, playing piano, and singing with the Barbershop Chorus and church and community choirs. In addition, Ray enjoyed working with the Boy Scouts and was a faithful blood donor for many years. Following his retirement, he worked at Creel Funeral Home from 1989 to 1998.
Ray and LaVerna moved to Billings in 2008. He passed away in the loving care of St. John’s Lutheran Ministries Retirement Community on February 4, 2013 in Billings, MT.
He is survived by his wife LaVerna; their four children: Patty (Phil) Pollard, Peggy Conard (Brian Davis), Aleta Wiedenman, and Joe Conard. Also surviving is a sister Peggy (Floyd) Jenni and brother Robert Conard, as well as numerous dearly loved grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, extended family and friends who will miss his special presence in their lives. He was preceded in death by his brothers, Harry, Elmer, and Ted, and his sisters Mabel Lucas, Elsie Brown, and Mary Grensten, and his parents.
His blessing in our lives will be honored with two Memorial Services.
There will be a Memorial Service for Ray on Saturday, February 16, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Home in the Ocee Johnson Chapel. The address is 3940 Rimrock Road, Billings, MT 59102.
A Memorial Service will be held in Lewistown on Saturday, August 10, 2013 at 11:00 A.M. at Zion Lutheran Church, 604 West Evelyn, Lewistown. There will be a private spreading of the ashes following the service.
Creel Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangements.