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Donald John Fornall

obit_fornall

 

Donald John Fornall of Rexford passed away peacefully in his home on Sept. 15, 2013.

Don was born in Glendive, Mont., on Sept. 12, 1929, to Margret Haggerty-Fornall and John Fornall.

He graduated from Fairfield High School in Fairfield, Mont.  He played baseball for the Great Falls Electrics and served in the Air Force, stationed in Japan during the Korean War, before he married Charlotte Dahl of Fairfield in November of 1953.  He went on to play for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the AAA farm league in Carlsbad, N.M.  His daughter, Gwen Fornall-Grayson, was born in Carlsbad on March 30, 1954.

He graduated from the University of Montana in 1958.  During his college tenure, he played both basketball and baseball for the Montana Grizzlies.

Upon graduation, he and his family moved to St. Regis, Mont., where he had his own hunting, packing and guiding business.  He then moved back to Great Falls to work in construction and the stock yards.

In 1963, he and his family moved to the Browning area, where they settled for 22 years.   He worked in construction, taught school, coached sports, shod horses, and team roped in rodeos. He eventually became superintendent of the Heart Butte Schools. In addition, he ran the War Bonnet Lodge and a recycling business.

Although it was difficult to leave his many treasured family and friends, he and his wife Charlotte moved to Rexford to be closer to his daughter and grandchildren in 1985.  They bought the Frontier Bar. In 1987, Charlotte passed away.  Don continued to run the Frontier with his daughter Gwen and her husband Terry.  In his spare time, he worked in the woods, roped when he had the time, developed a motocross track, and enjoyed watching his grandchildren and great grandchildren enjoy life.

He is survived by his daughter Gwen Grayson and her husband Terry Grayson.  They have six children and their spouses:  Dawn Fornall, Stephanie and Chad Utter, Charli and Justin Chapman, Jonni Fornall and Robert Paulk, Grady Grayson, and Jayci Grayson.

He was blessed with 10 great grandchildren; Alicia Peacock, Alaina Peacock, Charlaine Utter, Terrin Utter, Riley Chapman, Cayli Chapman, Camryn Chapman, Brody Chapman, Donovan Fornall, and Cooper Fornall.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to all his friends and family who have blessed our lives through all these years.  We welcome you to attend a memorial service to be held at 3 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, at Rexford City Park directly behind the Frontier Bar in Rexford.  A potluck reception will follow at the Frontier Bar.

 

The family would appreciate memorials be made to Eureka Ambulance and/or Wings Regional Cancer Support. Wings is a not-for-profit organization created to offer financial assistance to individuals and their families to help defray out-of-pocket expenses associated with cancer treatment. Eureka Ambulance, P.O. Box 670, Eureka, MT  59917. WINGS, P.O. Box 7852, Kalispell, MT 59904.

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