Ray Melvin Anderson, 88, passed away Dec. 23, 2017 at Kalispell Regional Medical Center. He was born January 28, 1929 in Hockerville, Oklahoma. He was the third of thirteen children born to the late Alva Melvin Anderson and Tiney E. Goodwin. He was also preceded in death by his sister Dorothy Hall and brothers Alva Lee Anderson and J.L. Anderson.
In high school, Ray was an athlete and lettered in three sports for three years at Riverton High School in Riverton, Kansas. After graduating in May of 1947, he went to Montana to visit and began working at J. Neils Lumber Company which later became St. Regis Paper Co. and finally Champion International. He soon met the love of his life, Myrtle McDougall. They eloped July 27, 1949 and bought their first house for $700 cash. They have six children. In 1991, he retired from Champion International after 45 years. He continued to volunteer in the community and he and Myrtle were named Man and Woman of the Year.
Ray appreciated nature and the beauty of his Montana home. He loved his church — Troy United Methodist Church — old cars and sports. He enjoyed cheering on his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren any chance he had. He volunteered for many years at the food pantry. He was also a carpenter and woodworker and used his talents to build his family’s home; the first two Habitat for Humanity houses in Troy; and countless projects and renovations for family and friends. Most of all he loved his family.
He had a quick-witted humor and a contagious laugh. He will be remembered for his sweet, gentle and giving soul and the example he set as a husband, father and friend. He had an unmatched kindness that he shared with his family, friends and the community around him.
Ray is survived by his wife of 68 years, Myrtle McDougall; his six children — Ken Anderson (wife Jacky), Les Anderson, Camden DeMart (husband Herb), Cookie Winslow (husband Paul), Darlene Anderson and Cole Anderson (wife Tammy); ten grandchildren — Denver Winslow (wife Anita), Darcy DeMart, Amy Pfeifle (husband Keenan), Josh Anderson, Susan Marshall (husband Curtis), Asa Anderson, Chevon Anderson, Adam Anderson (wife Courtney), Jared Anderson (wife Cassidy) and David Anderson; and thirteen great-grandchildren — Derrick Winslow, Cy Winslow, Kenna Pfeifle, Reese Pfeifle, Eliza Marshall, Luke Avidiya, Beau Avidiya, David Avidiya, Payton Anderson, Kimber Anderson, Aspen Anderson, Damen Anderson and Avery Anderson. He is also survived by his siblings Alice Garber (husband Bill), Lillian Hefley (husband Jim), Carol Vierck (husband Carl), Dale Anderson (wife Evie), Larry Anderson (wife Gaye), Danny Anderson (wife Kathy), Neal Anderson (wife Ruth), David Anderson (wife Sandy) and Darryl Anderson.
A Memorial Service will be held on Dec. 27, 2017 at 2 p.m. at the Troy United Methodist Church. Memorials may be to the Troy volunteer ambulance or Habitat for Humanity. Arrangements are under the care of Schnackenberg & Nelson Funeral Home in Libby. Online condolences and memories may be shared at www.schnackenbergfh.com.