On March 17, 2011, a truly unique and gifted man passed from our presence. Although being treated for cancer, his death was unexpected.
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Ronald Buel Jarrett was a long-time resident of Gallatin Gateway. Born in Long Beach, Calif., on Feb. 20, 1937, he was the first-born child of Buel and Marguerite McGuire Jarrett. He spent most of his life in the family home in Westminster, Calif., where he learned to build furniture under his father's tutelage. These skills were the foundation upon which he continued to build for the rest of his life.
While raising his family, he proudly served as a professional fireman with the Santa Ana Fire Department. During his days off, he also had a successful and rewarding career in restaurant design. In 1981, he left California for the high country of Montana, seeking a less complicated life and clarity of mind.
Ron felt he was born into a far too modern society and welcomed the opportunity to pursue a simpler, more rudimentary lifestyle. So began his journey to the wilder side of Montana and a path to personal rediscovery. Having resigned himself to the life of a bachelor, he poured his heart and soul into the pursuit and creation of all things pertinent to the era of the fur trade and mountain man period. He embraced the mountain man persona, believing that he who travels fastest, travels alone. However, after being relentlessly pursued for seven years by his future wife, Margaret, he learned that love was not quite done with him yet. So began the best of the rest of his life … the next 21 years were a series of travels, adventures, learning experiences, trials and tribulations, all infused with love, laughter and artistic spontaneity.
Ron was happiest with a project to tackle. He was an artist first, with the passion to create his finest work, no matter the size or scope of the challenge. He built amazing custom furniture and carved fabulous mantels and doors. His attention to detail was obvious from the miniature dioramas, to the bird houses, to his most prized creation of all, a primitive yet fully functional sheep wagon.
He was preceded in death by his father, Buel; brother, Bob; son, Jeffrey; and nephew, Travis Hatch.
Ron leaves behind his wife and soulmate, Margaret; adored son, Jonathan, daughter-in-law, Gayle (Newman), and granddaughter, Ivy Lynn; mother, Marguerite (McGuire); sister, Pam (Tom) Wilson; sister, Jan Hatch; nephew, Jarrett Wilson; and niece, Lauren Wilson. He will be missed and remembered equally by his extended family and many friends.
Donations in Ron's name may be made to Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center at www.bozemandeaconess.org, or to Heart of the Valley Animal Shelter at www.heartofthevalleyshelter.org.
There will be no memorial services at this time. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, July 23; details will follow.
The rest of Ron's story, condolences, and memories may be shared at www.dokkennelson.com.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service; www.dokkennelson.com.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle from Mar. 26 to Mar. 27, 2011