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December 20, 2012 9:23 am

Forrest ‘Frosty’ Cordes

(March 3, 1925 - Dec. 15, 2012)

Forrest Dale Cordes, 87, known to most simply as “Frosty,” died Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012.

He was born on March 3, 1925 in Guthrie, Okla. He was the second of three children born to Henry and Fairy Cordes.

Frosty was introduced to his future wife Victoria in the fall of 1947. Four months later, on New Year’s Day 1948, they were married. Married life took these two to many places over the next 64 years while working in the oil industry.

In 1973, after working in the oil fields of Oklahoma, Montana and Wyoming, Frosty was offered a field management position in the oil industry in Iran. He and Victoria packed up and moved with their two youngest children. He was warmly accepted by both ex-patriots and locals alike. Frosty’s position was commonly referred to as the “company man” but unlike his counterparts Frosty would show up on location in coveralls and a hard hat instead of a suit and brief case. “Mr. Frosty” was what he was known as by his Iranian crews. 

Frosty spent the next five years on the other side of the world with his family until conflict in the region forced them out of Iran. Frosty took a position in Cabimas, Venezuela, in early 1979 where he was the foreman for offshore drilling operations on Lake Maracaibo. Again he and Victoria moved with two children to yet another foreign country.

In 1980 Frosty moved his family back to Powell and took a position working 28 days on and 28 days off in Egypt, doing most of his work on the Red Sea. Frosty did this until 1985 when he was offered a new position with an oil company in the Netherlands managing offshore operations on the North Sea. Living in their seaside town near The Hague, he and Victoria loved the countryside, the Dutch people, walks along the shoreline and tulips galore.

Frosty retired from the oil industry in the late ‘80s. Unwilling to actually retire, Frosty sold cars for Garvin Motors, and even stocked shelves and was a checker at Wal-Mart. He said he was “too young to be the greeter.” He even joined Victoria delivering the Billings Gazette for 13-plus years, serving his Gazette customers faithfully 365 days a year. It wasn’t enough to just toss the paper on the sidewalk or place it in the tube on the road, Frosty insisted on walking some of the papers to the door and placing it inside the screen for a number of customers on his route. Frosty found himself back in the retail business when The Merc was started in 2004. He was certainly at home at The Merc, helping customers with clothing purchases, stocking merchandise and of course, visiting!

Frosty never knew a stranger, only friends he hadn’t met yet. He was full of corny jokes and big laughs. He loved spending time with family, reading, doing yard work and even enjoyed a round of golf now and then.

He was preceded in death by his wife Victoria; son Peter; parents Henry and Fairy; sister June; and brother Tyler.

He is survived by his daughter K. Suzan Grenier of Boulder, Colo.; sons William “Randy,” Michael “Rene” (Sandy) and Victor (Colleen) Cordes, all of Powell, and daughter-in-law Peggy Cordes of Casper; grandchildren Michelle (Tim) Garrett, Justin Cordes, all of Casper, Hannah, Teagan, Zane and Ryan Cordes and Dylan Cordes, all of Powell; and great-grandchildren Randi and Brooke Garrett of Casper.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 22 at St. Barbara’s Catholic Church in Powell. Burial will follow at Crown Hill Cemetery in Powell.

Thompson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements and condolences may be sent to the family at www.thompsonfuneral.net or P.O. Box 807, Powell, WY 82435.

2 comments

  • Comment Link December 20, 2012 12:10 pm posted by Betty Kranz

    My dear friend of 60 years is gone and this leaves a big hole in my heart. What a wonderful human being he was. I can just hear him say," Victoria, I'm not staying here without you." Loved them both so much. Blessing to you all. Betty and Jim Kranz

  • Comment Link December 26, 2012 9:17 am posted by Renee skalsky

    Deepest Sympathy goes out to the Cordes Family...Loved both Victoria and Frosty...They will be sadly missed by all.

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