Leo M. Hollcroft


(Jan. 21, 2005)

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Friday, Jan. 21 at 10 a.m. at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Buffalo for former Powell resident, Leo Marion Hollcroft, who died Sunday, Jan. 16 at Amie Holt Care Center in Buffalo. He was 89.

He was born June 9, 1915, on the family ranch on Powder River in northeast Johnson County to Samuel and Goldie Hollcroft. He attended country school near Micekleberry Draw and worked on ranches as a youth.

He entered the U.S. Navy in March of 1937 and spent nine years as a radioman and was promoted to Radioman 1st Class. His assignments were to the Naval Air Patrol in California and Puerto Rico.

He was also assigned to the naval base in Port of Spain, Trinidad, where he served two years. He was the radioman on duty in New Hampshire and handled the original SOS and emergency messages when when the submarine Squalus was lost. He also served on the USS Chachalaca, a mine sweeper, the USS Drexler, a destroyer, and the USS Inflict, a destroyer escort.

While serving in the navy, he met and was married to Claire Carroll in Boston, Mass., on June 25, 1944. After the war, they returned to Wyoming, and he went to work for Pure Oil and became a tool pusher. He was offered a position in Texas, which he declined because his heart was in Wyoming.

The family moved to Powell in 1948 where he successfully farmed for 17 years. They returned to Buffalo and the family ranch on the Powder River in 1967 where he ranched until his retirement in 1983.

The Hollcroft ranch on Powder River has been in the Hollcroft family for 105 years.

The couple enjoyed many winters in lake Havasu City and Bullhead, Ariz. He was a member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus, the VFW and the American Legion. He was a well-liked, trusted man and a hard worker his entire life. His family will miss him.

Survivors include his wife Claire of Buffalo; one son, Leo M. Hollcroft, Jr. of Hawthorne, Nebr.; three daughters, Marilyn Ann Vercimak of Rawlins, Carol Marie Key and her husband Terry of Missoula, Mont., and Kathleen Anne Hollcroft of Arvada, who is now on the family ranch; seven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother and a sister.

A Rosary will be recited tonight (Thursday) at 7 p.m. at the church. Visitation will be from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Adams Funeral Home. Burial will be in Willow Grove Cemetery with military graveside rites.

For those who wish, memorial donations to Amie Holt Care Center in care of the Adams Funeral Home would be appreciated by the family.