By The Times 

Gary L. Wheeler

October 19, 1941 – December 2, 2017

 

December 7, 2017

Gary L. Wheeler, 76, of Libby, Montana, died on Saturday, December 2, 2017 at Brendan House in Kalispell after suffering a traumatic brain injury in September while feeding cattle on the family farm. He was born October 19, 1941 in Council, ID to LeRoy and Freida Wheeler. His family moved to Washington state within a few months of birth and eventually settled in Waitsburg where he developed a love of farming and animals. Gary graduated from Waitsburg High School in 1961. While in high school he was very involved with FFA. He raised and showed pigs, was an officer and a member of the livestock judging team. Gary also played football, basketball and the trumpet. Outside of school he was a member of the Amber Angels Car Club.

Gary entered the US Army on February 4, 1964 and served 5 months until being honorably discharged. He then served in the Reserves. Gary moved to Libby, Montana in 1962 to work for C&L Plumbing and became a journeyman pipe fitter plumber and worked construction until he retired in 2002. During his 40+ year career he worked on major projects such as the Libby Dam, Kalispell Regional Hospital and Stone Container in Missoula. He was a proud Union Plumber/member of local 459.

Gary married Kathy McCrory on October 22, 1966 in Libby. They raised two children in Libby on the family farm where they raised livestock and Christmas trees. Gary was an active member with his son Jason and daughter Jennifer in 4-H.

Survivors include his wife Kathy Wheeler of 51 years; son Jason and wife (Brandee Halley), and daughter Jennifer McFarlane and husband (Duncan); grandchildren Samantha and Alexcia Wheeler; a sister Gail Harshman (Jerry) of Waitsburg; and numerous nieces and nephews, including Vickie Hamann (Ross) and family of Waitsburg and Kathy Harshman of Camas, WA.

Services will be held at 11:00 a.m., Thursday, December 7, 2017 at the Schnackenberg & Nelson Funeral Home Chapel in Libby. A reception at the VFW will be held following graveside services. Online condolences and memories may be shared at http://www.schnackenbergfh.com.

 

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