Harvey F. Clouse, 83, passed away on Thursday, April 13, 2017 at Village Health Care Center. He dealt valiantly with a rare autoimmune condition, Wegener’s Granulomatosis.
Harvey was born to Pauline and Arthur Clouse on September 19, 1933, in Windsor, Colorado. When Harvey was 3, his family moved to Kalispell, Montana. By age 5, he began riding Intermountain bus alone to Missoula to spend time with his aunt and uncle, Marie and Ira Halling, at their farm on Mullan Road. While in school, Harvey spent every vacation he could with the Hallings, and he learned at an early age to drive a team of horses and a tractor. While attending Flathead County High School, Harvey was very active in the music program, and upon graduation, he was awarded a music scholarship to the University of Montana. He decided, however, to give up music and work on the Halling farm.
At the age of 19, Harvey was drafted into the United States Army. He completed basic training at Fort Ord, California. From there, he was deployed to Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska where he became Communications Chief. Later, he was sent to Indian Mountain Radar Station, located north of the Arctic Circle, serving in the same capacity. During his first November at Indian Mountain, storms prevented supply planes from reaching the station. The food supply dropped to a dangerous level, but he fondly recalled a Thanksgiving dinner served to 300 men consisting of bread and roasted moose—courtesy of an impromptu hunting trip.
Harvey continued to support the Halling farm, even securing an emergency leave to complete the fall harvest when Ira fell ill. In May of 1955, Harvey was honorably discharged from the Army and returned to Missoula to manage the Halling Farm. On June 29, 1955, he married Mitzie Kinney—a marriage lasting more than 61 years. Three children were born of this union: Kristi, Dale and Kimberly. Harvey also became a foster parent to a teenaged boy named Paul.
After Ira’s death, Harvey began buying part of the Halling Farm. He raised cattle, grew hay, grain, and sugar beets. He even tried raising soup peas, but that proved an unsuccessful venture when August winds put many vines in the nearby trees. During the winters, Harvey worked for American Crystal Sugar Factory or the U.S. Postal Service. For a short time, he dug graves at Sunset Memorial Gardens when it was done with a pick and shovel. Harvey also had a 900 head feedlot for several years, and he subsequently started Clouse Trucking, transporting a variety of animals, including bison from the Range.
Harvey was an active member of the Missoula community, serving on the Hellgate Elementary School Board, the Production Credit Association Board, and the Soil Conservation Board. He was also a sheep barn superintendent at the Western Montana Fair. Later, he became a member of the Fair Board—back when it was a “Down and Dirty” working group. It was not unusual for Harvey and Noel Stout to be cleaning bleachers or repairing pens after the rodeo until 1:00 a.m. Harvey did a little bit of everything; except cleaning the fairground toilets-- that was Bill Nooney’s job! Dale Mahlum, board chairman, often praised Harvey for his work ethic, and in 1984, Harvey was named “Man of the Year.”
In 1979, Harvey changed careers and became a John Deere salesman for Davies Farm Supply and later Triple W. He was known as the John Deere Guru for 17 years. He then retired for one week before starting a 20 year career as a school bus driver for Beach Transportation; where he was often called “one of the best.” His favorite saying was, “I didn’t put a scratch on a bus or a passenger.” How he loved that job! Harvey was also one of the Famous (better make that Infamous!) Midnight Movers for Bretz RV under the direction of Dick Shipporeit and Ken Walt. Additionally, for three summers, he was a volunteer driver for Camp-Mak-A-Dream.
In his spare time, Harvey loved his many elk and antelope hunting trips with Dale, Dan, Earl and Hank. He treasured bowling with the John Deere team, and continued league bowling into his 82nd year. He also enjoyed woodworking and crafted many gifts for the family.
Harvey was preceded in death by a baby brother who died of the measles, his parents, Aunt Marie and Uncle Ira, and a great-grandson, Tommy.
He is survived by his wife Mitzie; nephew Don Kinney (Ann); children Kristi (Ralph) Jackson, Dale Clouse, and Kimberly (Tom) McGuire; grandchildren Brian (Elizabeth) Jackson, Brad (Mariela) Jackson, Shawn Jackson, Elizabeth (Brady) Michels, Hannah Clouse, Jeff (Kristen) McGuire, Kayla (Chris) Munoz, Kristen, and Kaitlyn McGuire; great-grandchildren Joshua, Dewey, Abby, Isaac and Oliver Jackson, Payton, Averie and Livia Michels, Leah and Brody McGuire, River, Ripley and Geordi Munoz, and expected baby Jackson in October 2017. He is also survived by his John Deere and Beach Transportation families and his foster son Paul Nichols.
Harvey wished to acknowledge all family members for their daily assistance during this difficult time.
We also wish to thank John M. Smith, M.D. for going above and beyond, his nurse Martha, Frederick W. Tai, M.D., as well as the staff at Community Medical Center.
We appreciate the extra support given by Marlene Marshall, Hal Edwards, Hank Knight, Robert Patterson and Tom Platt.
At age 15, Harvey single-handedly rescued two friends who had fallen through the ice while skating on Flathead Lake, and in later years he rescued victims of rollover accidents and a young family stranded in a blizzard. These actions exemplify what we’ve known all along: Harvey is a hero, as seen through his devotion to his family, his generosity, and genuine interest in each of his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He has touched all our lives and will be greatly missed.
Harvey’s Life—Well Lived
Burial has taken place. A celebration of life is planned for 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 13th at Sunset Memorial Funeral Home with a reception immediately following the service.
Remembrances may be made to Camp-Mak-A-Dream, P.O. Box 1450, Missoula, MT, 59806-1450 or a charity of the donor’s choice.