Harold James Farmer


(August 20, 2002)

A star athlete at Powell High School and the University of Wyoming, who later went on to become an athletic coach, Harold J. Farmer, 68, Powell, died Tuesday evening, Aug. 20 of an apparent heart attack.

He would have been 69 years old today (Thursday, Aug. 22).

Born in Big Horn County on Aug. 22, 1933, he grew up in Powell and always called Powell home. He was the son of Duard and Gretna (Smith) Farmer.

He was educated in the Powell schools and graduated from Powell High School in 1951 where he starred in football and track. He led Powell to the state championship football game in 1950 and attracted the attention of coaches at the University of Wyoming. Sandwiched around military service with the U.S. Army in Germany, he lettered in football as a fleet, 160-pound halfback for the Cowboys from 1952-1957 under Bowden Wyatt, Phil Dickens and Bob Devaney.

He also was a sprinter for the Cowboy track team, specializing in the 440-yard dash.

After graduating from UW, he returned to Powell to teach agriculture and coach football, baseball and rodeo at Northwest Community College from 1960-1979.

He married Marge Bruyer in July of 1961, and they had three children: Renee, Mark and Rochelle. They were later divorced.

On June 3, 1975, in Santa Maria, Calif., he married Frances Maggard. They have made their home in Powell. Since his retirement from the college he has continued to farm and ranch and pursue his love of horses.

He was a member of St. John's Episcopal Church. He was a devoted follower of University of Wyoming athletics and greatly enjoyed reminiscing with former teammates at UW reunions.

Survivors include his wife Frances of Powell; six children and nine grandchildren: Renee Thomas and husband Steve and their daughter, Anna, of Presho, S.D.; Mark Farmer of Pittsburg, Kans.; Rochelle Wright and husband Scott and their children, Raelle and Shawn, of Cody; Jay Maggard and wife Christie and their children, Kellen and Ali, of Seattle, Wash.; Cindy Fulton and husband Pidge and their sons, Nick and Beau, of Powell; and Phil Maggard and wife Lisa and their sons, Deacon and Dixon, of Cheyenne; his father, Duard Farmer of Powell; two sisters, Jeraldine Underwood and husband Harold of Powell and Donna Kisor of Powell; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Gretna Farmer.

Funeral services will be conducted at St. John's Episcopal Church Friday, Aug. 23 at 10 a.m.

Miratsky-Easton Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.