Clarence James ("Coy") Redmond, 83, of Belgrade died shortly after midnight on Nov. 6, 2008 at Mountain View Care Center in Bozeman.
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Clarence was born April 6, 1925, in Mosinee, Wis., the sixth child (of seven surviving past infancy) of Patrick and Anna (Reidel) Redmond.
On Feb. 18, 1950, he married Joyce Alice Sagstetter in Wausau, Wis., and together they raised five sons.
He served on active duty in the U.S. Navy during World War II, as a radio operator from April 9, 1943, through an honorable discharge on Feb. 25, 1946, participating in the Normandy invasion on Omaha Beach along with his older brother, John.
After his military discharge, Clarence held several jobs. He worked for Crown Zellerbach in Port Angeles Wash., in the apple orchards of central Washington, for the Milwaukee Railroad, Marathon Can Company, Curtiss Company and other employers in northern Wisconsin, until he became a ticket agent with North Central Airlines in Wausau from March 1952 through November 1956.
He entered federal employment with the CAA (now FAA) as an airway operations specialist at the Miles City Airport on Jan. 7, 1957, before transferring to the Bozeman Airport as an air-traffic control specialist, where he worked from Feb 10, 1958, to retirement on April 28, 1984. After his official retirement, Clarence worked for the Belgrade School District for another 10 years.
Coy also recorded weather observations over his 27 years of aviation service at Frank Wiley Field (Miles City) and Gallatin Field (Belgrade). After a short stay in Bozeman, the family moved to Belgrade in 1958, where they continued to be a part of the community and where he was a Cub Scout and Boy Scout troop leader.
Clarence loved the outdoors and happily passed this trait on to each of his sons. The family spent much time camping, fishing, hunting, hiking and participating in Western recreational activities. Memories associated with the outdoors include elk hunting, burned marshmallows, the old canvas and leaky tent, and construction of small dams on seemingly every mountain stream in Montana are cherished by his sons. Many of these memories are often associated with the little red Willy's jeep teetering on two wheels or buried in the mud or snow.
He was an avid reader, and developed a particular interest in the West and its history, and history in general. He maintained a strong interest in aviation and kept in touch with this community in Montana during and after his career, and for a time was a licensed private pilot. He had a particular fascination with the skies and weather of Montana, which was passed on to his sons.
He had an aptitude for woodworking and mechanical activities, especially those including products built by the factories in Detroit. His far-reaching mechanical abilities were often utilized during the family vacations in the old Chevy station-wagon. Clarence was known for his sense of humor and could always be depended upon to tell a good fishing story that involved many of his long-time friends.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother; by brothers Phillip, Kenneth and John Redmond; and by his sister Margaret Warner. Another sibling, Donald Redmond, died at age 10 days. He is survived by his brother, the Rev. Arthur Redmond, Rozelleville, Wis.; and sister. Patricia Mealey, Burlingame, Calif.
He is also survived by his wife Joyce Alice Redmond, Belgrade; and five sons: Kelly Thomas Redmond, of Reno, Nev.; Scott Douglas Redmond, of Ennis; Cary Michael Redmond, his wife Cindy and their daughters Samantha and Devin, of Beaverton, Ore.; Patrick Lee Redmond, his wife Michele Corriel and daughter Mackenzie, of Belgrade; and Michael Dean Redmond of Beaverton, Ore.
Cremation has taken place at Dahl Funeral Home. Clarence's ashes will be spread at a later date in the Bridger Mountains where he happily spent years wandering the ridges and gulches with his family and friends. He will be missed immensely by his family.
A Catholic service to be conducted in part by his brother Father Arthur Redmond will be held at the Dahl Funeral Chapel in Bozeman on Thursday, Nov. 13th at 1 p.m. This will be immediately followed by an informal memorial and social gathering for friends and family at The Elks Lodge, Bozeman, which is adjacent to Dahl Funeral Chapel. An informal memorial party will take place on Nov. 14 at 4:00 PM in the River Rock Community Center. Friends are encouraged to bring stories; everything else will be provided.
Memorials and donations can be sent in Clarence Redmond's name to Alzheimer's Association, Montana Chapter, 3010 11th Ave. North, Billings, Montana, 59101.
Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.dahlcares.com.
Dahl Funeral Chapel
300 Highland Boulevard
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Nov. 9, 2008