Stuart ‘Stu’ Eckhardt


Stuart Bennett Eckhardt, 76, passed away peacefully with his family by his side at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Billings, Montana after a brave battle following complications from heart surgery.

Stu, as he was affectionately called by family and friends, was born in Aberdeen, Washington. He was the second son of George and Bonnie Jean Eckhardt, joining his brother George and then sister Mary Elizabeth.

Stu was raised in Powell, Wyoming on the Two Dot Feedlot outside Ralston. He attended school in Powell before transferring to Cody High School his senior year in 1966.

Stu served in the Wyoming National Guard after graduation.

He married Janet Marie Dugger in 1968 and to this union two children were born, Stuart Michael and Sheree Marie.

In 1978, Stu married Debbie Paul, his wife of 45 years and to the union two more children were born, Jacob Paul and Jessica Rose.

Stu attended Western Wyoming College for welding and was employed as a pipe welder at the Jim Bridger Power Plant before going to work for Marathon Pipeline for 18 years. After leaving Marathon, Stu fulfilled his dream of owning his own truck and trailers. Following this, Stu worked for many construction companies hauling heavy equipment and operating heavy machinery until his retirement in 2020 due to health issues and to spend more time with his family. There was not a piece of machinery or semi-truck Stu could not drive or operate. His backing skills were legendary.

Stu enjoyed many outdoor activities, including camping, boating, and fishing with his family. He enjoyed having coffee and visiting with his friends at the local cafe. Stu was an avid hunter, in his early years with his brother George and later with his sons and the Morris family.

Stu was proceeded in death by his parents George and Bonnie Jean (Andrews) Eckhardt and his brother George Eckhardt.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years Debbie; his children Stuart Michael of Cody, Wyoming, Sheree Marie Bullock of Cody, Wyoming, Jacob Paul of Dickinson, North Dakota, and Jessica Rose (Mark) Hannig of Williston, North Dakota; his four grandchildren Sasha (Sean) Malcom, and Dillon, Carly and Tristan Bullock; and great-grandson Ben Malcom; his sister Mary Elizabeth (Clint) Grue of Terry, Montana, and sister-in-law Pam Eckhardt of Colorado Springs, Colorado as well as his very close friends Carl and Sheryl Morris of Cody, Wyoming, who Stu’s children consider their aunt and uncle, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Stu loved his family fiercely, especially his children, and was very proud of their many accomplishments.

A celebration of life and service will be held the first week of June at Ballard Funeral Home. The specific date will be published at a later time. In lieu of flowers, please donate to a charity of your choice in Stu’s honor. 

Condolences can be shared at on Stuarts page.