Clarence "Tuff" Meskimen

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Clarence "Tuff" Meskimen passed away at home on Nov. 23, 2010, after battling a variety of illnesses. Tuff was the sixth of seven sons born to Elmer Meskimen and Myrtle Weisbeck Meskimen in Hamilton. Tuff's older brothers were going to make him the toughest kid on the hill, and so he received his nickname which he stood true to. He grew up in Willow Creek, where he attended grade school and high school. In high school he played basketball. His senior year of school was the first in Willow Creek history to make the state Championship game. After high school, Tuff attended a semester of college at Western Montana College in Dillon before being called by "Uncle Sam" and drafted to the United States Army. He served in Vietnam for one year.
Returning from the war he married his high school sweetheart DEt Ann Cook on July 5, 1969. Tuff also returned to work at the Kaiser Cement Plant (Ashgrove) in Montana City. He retired after 36 years on the job. Tuff and DEt welcomed daughter Ara in 1976 and son Ace in 1978.
Tuff was a problem solver. If he needed a tool and didn't have it he would make his own. He was also a man that believed if it didn't fit, get a bigger hammer. Tuff was an avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt and fish. It was often said that he could catch a fish in a mud puddle on Main Street. Every year during hunting season his front yard looked like a campground when all his friends and family came to hunt. When asked a question you would get the typical Meskimen answer of "I don't know" or "I don't care".
Family was his pride and joy. He is survived by his wife DEt, daughter Ara, son Ace (Amy) and his two special granddaughters, Sophie Belle and Hadley Nicole. His brothers Bernie (Peggy) of Montana City, Elmer (Anne) of Darby, Jack (Gwen) of Kalispell and Dick (Jeannine) of Lakeside, Calif. Also, by his Aunt Orpha Fessler and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Tuff is preceded in death by his parents, son Luke, brothers Les and Dale and in-laws Art and Labina Cook.
Tuff's family would like to thank his many doctors, nurses, and office staff for the care and friendship through the years. Memorials can be made in Tuff's name to the St. Peters Cancer Center or the Montana Hope Project.
Memorial service will be held on Saturday Nov. 27, 2010, at 10:30 a.m. at Anderson Stevenson Wilke Funeral Home in Helena, followed by a graveside service at Mount Green Cemetery in Willow Creek at 3 p.m.
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Nov. 26, 2010
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