Max Lewis Robison died at his home north of McAllister Monday evening, Sept. 6, 2010.
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Max was born Oct. 1, 1925, in Bone, Idaho, to Heber A. and Jennie (Bybee) Robison. He spent his childhood on his father's ranch at Bone. At the age of 15, he left home and began his apprenticeship for ranching by riding range for ranches in Jackson Hole, Wyo.
In October 1943, he was inducted into the United States Navy. After basic training he was sent to Moscow, Idaho, for specialist training as a radioman. He served honorably in the Pacific on the U.S.S. Cumberland Sound, a PBY tender.
After the war his brother, Wayne, bought land on North Meadow Creek north of McAllister and asked Max to join him. He met Kate Armstrong at a dance and they were married on March 28, 1948. In 1950, he bought two sections of land from his brother and started his own ranch, the place that his and Kate's six children think of as the old homestead.
Max was an athlete. He rode the Montana rodeo circuit in the late 1940s and the early 1950s, and in 1953 won the MRA All Around Cowboy. He never lost his interest in the sport. He was among the founding members of the Ennis Rodeo Association and served as a board member and then as the Ennis Rodeo Association president. Until just two years before his passing, Max made the trek to National Finals, and while everybody else enjoyed the Las Vegas nights; Max watched the rodeo.
Until his mid-60s Max broke his own horses and trained them as cattle ponies. Even in his 80s he saddled his favorite, Prince, to ride around the cows during calving season and irrigate in summer. He often said, as the pains of age gained on him, that he had trained Prince to fall over on him to end it all. He always said it with a wry grin and a twinkle in his eye, and then he would say, "And every day I have to tell Prince, 'Prince today is not the day.'"
Max is survived by his wife, Kate of 62 years, his sons, Lee and his wife, Kathy of Poolesville, Md., Frank and his wife, Jan of Portland, Ore., Vern and his wife, Chyral of McAllister, and Max Jr. of McAllister; and his daughter, Molly and her husband, Dale Aagard of McAllister.
His daughter, Jennie, predeceased him.
Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15, at the Assembly of God Church in Ennis, with graveside services following at the McAllister Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Ennis VFW Post 1723.
K & L Mortuaries
103 1st Ave E
Three Forks, MT 59752
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Sept. 9, 2010