Lewis (Louie) Wade Pope, 67 passed away on Sunday, September 5, 2021 in St George, Utah surrounded by his loving family.
He was born on June 16, 1954 in Pocatello, Idaho. He lived his childhood years in Arimo, Idaho during the winter and in Arbon Valley on a dry farm during the summers. He and his brothers and sisters learned the "ins and outs" of dry farming and worked side by side out in the fields with their father. In 1964, his parents sold the ranch and in 1969 purchased the Best Western Crest Motel (Clover Creek Inn) in Montpelier, Idaho. On Louie's 16th birthday they traveled to Montpelier, Idaho to meet the sellers, Jamie & Bill Stalder. Louie lived with them and learned the motel business while his family made final preparations to make the move to Montpelier.
He graduated from Bear Lake High School and attended college at ISU in Pocatello, Idaho. It didn't take him long to know that he had a desire to own and run his own business, so he returned home and got started with his first business venture, The Montpelier Laundry. He traveled to Fish Haven, Idaho, Garden City, Utah and Afton, Wyoming picking up laundry from the local motels. They also offered personal laundry and dry-cleaning services.
During this time, he met and dated his wife, Christine (Chris) Ann Hymas. After she graduated from high school, they were married on December 19, 1975. They began managing the Crest Motel (Clover Creek Inn) and later purchased the business. Louie saw the need for a restaurant for the tourists and business people that stayed in Montpelier. They later bought the Vir-Day Café and motel across the street from the Crest motel. The café, later known as Butch Cassidy's was remodeled and expanded to accommodate tour busses that traveled through Montpelier and on to Jackson Hole, WY and Yellowstone National Park. He desired to keep the tour buses in town overnight. Many good friends organized and created The Butch Cassidy's Gang who held up the busses at the mouth of the canyon and brought them in to Montpelier, where a good old fashioned out door cookout awaited them followed by western dancing in the motel parking lot. Much fun was had by all and many great and everlasting friendships were made with the tourists, members of the gang and Louie's family. Louie was also very involved with the community and was a member of the Montpelier Fire Department and Montpelier Lions Club and later was instrumental in the establishment of The Oregon Trail Center in Montpelier, Idaho. He also served as an Idaho Best Western Governor and was a member of the Idaho Travel Council. His other business adventures involved helmet manufacturing and accessories and a gas and convenience store.
Louie enjoyed the challenges that were ever present running a business and taught his children the value of hard work.
He had a "big" heart and helped many people in their time of need. He would lend an ear, taking time to ponder their situation and then assisted them however he felt would best benefit them, and understanding all the while that everyone's circumstances are different and unique.
He always encouraged "smiles" from everyone. A smile on anyone's face brought happiness to Louie.
Louie's greatest love in life was his wife and children. He loved spending time with them and was always interested in their every endeavor. His happiest moments were seeing smiles and hearing laughter from family members and friends and feeling hugs and kisses from his grandkids! Louie and Chris raised 5 wonderful children in Montpelier, Idaho and enjoyed watching them grow into adults and experiencing the joy of having their own families.
Louie was proceeded in death by his father Max Arlo Pope, his mother, Margret F Pope, his brother, William Dennis Pope, two sisters, Joyce Stephens and Connie Mickelsen. He is survived by his wife, Chris Pope, his children; Darrick Max Pope (RaNae), Jordan Ray Pope (Ashleah), Brittany Pope (Lance Harris), Quinton Taber Pope (Toshauna) and Lindsey Ann Petersen (Dee); and their twelve beautiful grandchildren.
There will be a viewing on Friday, September 10, 2021 from 6:00 - 8:00pm at the Schwab- Matthews Mortuary at 702 Clay Street in Montpelier, Idaho and a viewing on Saturday, September 11, 2021 from 10:30 - 11:45am at the Montpelier Idaho LDS Stake Center at 340 North 6th Street, Montpelier, ID 83254. The Funeral Services will be held at 12:00pm.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Oregon Trail Center on Louie's behalf.
Published by Idaho State Journal on Sep. 10, 2021.