Loren C. Tilley


(Dec. 18, 2000)

Funeral services will be conducted Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Cowley LDS Church for Loren C. Tilley of Deaver, who died Monday, Dec. 18 in the Powell Hospital surrounded by family. He was 91.

He was born Aug. 9, 1909, to John H. Tilley and Eva L. Hurst Filer Tilley. He had two sisters, two half brothers, two step brothers, three step sisters and an adopted brother.

He married Leona May Hoffman in Bridger, Mont., on Nov. 17, 1930, and they shared 64 wonderful years before her death in 1995.

Mr. Tilley was raised in northern Wyoming where he attended area schools. Although he only finished the eighth grade, he spent a lifetime learning.

Loren and Leona Tilley farmed in Kane until the construction of Yellowtail Dam forced their move to Deaver. He was part of the Deaver farming community for the last 35 years, noted for his honesty and integrity. His word and hand shake were as good as gold.

He was a "top ten" beet grower for several years and was known as a master mechanic and "the best Barber Green Asphalt machine operator in several states." He is credited with inventing the first beet digger/topper/hopper used in the Big Horn Basin.

His fondness for sales and auctions was well known in southern Montana and northern Wyoming. His family summarizes: "If Loren wasn't there, it wasn't a successful auction."

His greatest accomplishment was raising 11 children with his wife Leona. They also raised her younger brother Harold and helped in raising her other siblings after her mother's untimely death. He worked several jobs in addition to farming to make it possible.

Family reflects that Loren was never too busy to help a neighbor, many times putting aside his own work to do so. There was always room at the table for one more in the Tilley house.

All 11 children survive. The seven sons are C. Edward Tilley and wife Helen of Cape Girardeau, Mo., Donald E. Tilley of Fayetteville, N.C., Jerry R. Tilley and wife Corine of Deaver, Melvin D. Tilley and wife Sherry Kay of Powell, Earl W. Tilley and wife Karen of Powell, Dennis D. Tilley and wife Gina of Deaver and Marvin L. Tilley and wife Linda of Deaver. The four daughters are Joyce Buster of Lovell, Gloria L. Dudley and husband Everett of Fritch, Texas, Charlene C. Schulz and husband Kurt of Billings, Mont., and Sherry R. Day of Casper. He is survived by 36 grandchildren, 40 great-grandchildren, three great-great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, his parents, brothers, sisters and two much-loved grandsons and two much-loved granddaughters.

For those who wish, memorials can be made to the West Park Hospital dialysis unit in Cody or to a charity of choice.

Burial will be in the Lovell Cemetery.