Peter Earl Decker, 88, of Billings, Mont. passed away at St. Vincent Healthcare on May 30, 2014. He was born on Oct. 10, 1925, in Big Timber, Mont., to Peter Earl and Della Scyphers Decker. Pete grew up in Bozeman, and after finishing high school he immediately enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. When his military service ended in 1946, he returned to Bozeman and graduated from MSU in 1950. While attending MSU he met Mary Kay Archibald at a dance and they were married on Sept. 17, 1947, in Sheridan, Wyo. Armed with a degree in accounting and business, he set out to be an accountant. He and two friends started a mobile accounting business in Bozeman, which was short lived due to Dad being recalled back into the military, so off they went with Karen and Ken to Oceanside, Calif. Once his service was over and they were back in Montana, Pete contacted Anthony Gerharz, CPA, and he told Dad about a client, Fred Briggs, who was looking for a bookkeeper. In 1951 Pete went to work for Fred, and never left the beer business, which over time he purchased from Fred. He retired in 1992 after 41 years. Through his guidance, Pete remained involved in the business until the time he moved into the Vista at St. John's in 2011.
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Pete belonged to many organizations including the Billings Jaycees, Kiwanis, and the Al Bedoo Temple, where he was proud to be a member of the GI Drill Squad. There weren't many community activities that he didn't support personally or through his business.
Pete's primary hobby was his work. He worked hard during his lifetime to support his family. He enjoyed his time spent on Canyon Creek during the 70s and 80s. He and Mom cherished their lake time in Minnesota, especially when we all showed up. Pete and Mary Kay enjoyed traveling to many places, where Mom was the travel agent and Dad the chauffeur. Pete enjoyed a good comedy and his laugh could be heard throughout the land! He stayed in shape working out at the YMCA at noon for 50 years. Another favorite pastime was anything to do with the Bobcats. He was truly one of their most loyal fans and supported them faithfully.
Pete was preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Colleen; and his wife, Mary Kay. Pete is survived by his daughters, Karen (Jake) Boyer, Susan (Rue Liggett) Decker; sons, Ken (Sandy) Decker, Steve Decker, John (Claudia) Decker; brother, Bob (Lorraine) Decker; grandchildren, Tim Hofferber, Jens Bruhaug, Anne Decker-Zarkos, Adam and Laura Decker, Jon Sillitti, Paul (Romita) Sillitti; great-grandchildren, Kirsten Bruhaug, Zoe and Niko Zarkos.
Memorial services will be at the First Congregational United Church of Christ, 310 N 27th Street in Billings, on Tuesday, June 24, 2014, at 2 p.m. Memorials can be sent to the Shriner's Hospital, Al Bedoo Temple, PO Box 20673, Billings, MT 59104-0673; the Pete and Mary Kay Decker Scholarship Fund at Rocky Mountain College, 1511 Poly Drive, Billings, MT 59102; or the
A heartfelt thank you to the staff at the Vista, the nurses at St. Vincent, and Dr. Neal Sorensen. You are all wonderful. Arrangements are in the care of the staff at Dahl Funeral Chapel and memories may be shared with the family at www.dahlfuneralchapel.com.
Dahl Funeral Chapels
10 Yellowstone Avenue Billings, MT 59101
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on June 22, 2014