Our dad, Loren Willis Houg, passed away peacefully at the Northern Montana Care Center in Havre, Montana on Monday, April 22nd, 2019, after a long and valiant battle with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Dad was born to Grandpa Herbert and Grandma Dina (Wille) Houg in Wolf Point, MT on July 24th, 1939, minutes before his twin brother, Larry. He grew up north of Wolf Point in the Benrud community attending country school and helping on the family farm. After Dad graduated from Wolf Point High School in 1957, he joined the army and was stationed overseas in Guam and Okinawa. After his service he came back to the farm to work alongside Grandpa and Uncle Doug. At that time he reconnected with and then married his high school sweetheart, our mom, JoAn Hanel, on January 7th, 1963. It was on Houg Farms that they lived and worked together while raising us four children, Marc, Rebecca (Becky), Loren (Bruce), and Tonya.
Dad’s love of farming and raising Red Angus cattle was evident in the time he spent working with Mom and Uncle Doug on the farm, as well as, the hours reading and studying in order to build up the farm. He was a member of the NFO where he was chosen Farmer of the Year in the 1970’s. Dad was a member of First Lutheran Church in Wolf Point where he was an usher many Sunday mornings. He served several years on the Frontier School Board during the time we attended school there. Dad enjoyed “shaking a leg” at VFW dances, attending the Stampede events, having coffee with the neighbors, and attending bull sales. Dad was always ready and willing to lend a helping hand to anyone who needed it or asked for it. He developed a love for lapidary work which became his winter hobby. Dad created many beautiful pieces of agate jewelry and became quite adept at faceting semi-precious stones. Dad’s sense of humor was known and appreciated by all his family and friends. He was always tickled when given the chance to tease Mom, the grandmothers, and aunts. Dad was one heck of a story teller, too. I’m sure anyone who knows him can recall at least one or two of his stories. They always ended with his signature chuckle. We will surely miss that chuckle.
Dad’s survivors include his brothers, Dale (Kay) and Doug (Royal); sisters-in-law Marlene (Dewayne) Jager, Joyce (LeeRoy) Mann, Jeanie (Harry) Bickle, Jerriann Hanel, Janny (Dave) Parsley, Judy Lanterman, June (Mike) Vogt; brother-in-law Frank Hanel, Jr. (Tammie); children Marc (Janece) Houg, Becky (Rick) Fritz, Bruce Houg, Tonya (Mel) Paulson; grandchildren Rebecca Houg, Marjorie JoAn Houg, Dustin Houg, Benjamin Houg, Dina Fritz, Alice Fritz, Nastassja Burshia, Nicolet (BJ) Palmer, Lane Paulson, Britton Paulson, ten great grandchildren with another on the way, numerous nieces and nephews; and former daughter-in-law Angela Martinez Brotzman.
Dad was preceded in death by Mom, Grandpa Bert and Grandma Dina Houg, Grandpa Frank and Grandma Alice Hanel; his brothers Larry and Bruce Houg; a grandson Jeffrey Houg; great granddaughter ZayLee Houg; and brother-in-law Gary Lanterman.
Our mom,JoAn Marie Hanel Houg, passed away peacefully, October 31st, 2018 at Avantara Billings nursing home in Billings, Montana. Mom was born to Grandpa Frank and Grandma Alice (Folden) Hanel on February 26th, 1940 in Glasgow, Montana, minutes before her twin sister Joyce. Later the family settled in Wolf Point, Montana, where Mom attended elementary and high school, graduating in 1958. Mom married her high school sweetheart, our dad, Loren Houg in January 1963. They lived on Houg Farms where they raised us four children, Marc, Rebecca (Becky), Loren (Bruce), and Tonya.
Besides being the most attentive wife, mother, and grandmother, Mom was a master gardener, wonderful cook, avid reader, great seamstress, and enjoyed knitting, biking, and cross-country skiing. Her love of learning was evident through the numerous Bible studies she attended, as well as the telecom classes she took in the 1980’s stopping short of getting her paralegal degree.
Family was very important to Mom. She loved spending time with her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, looking forward to each great grand that was added to the ever-growing clan.
Mom was preceded in death by her parents, Grandpa Frank and Grandma Alice Hanel; Dad’s parents, Grandpa Bert and Grandma Dina Houg; grandson Jeffrey Houg; great granddaughter ZayLee Houg; and brothers-in-law Gary Lanterman, Larry Houg, and Bruce Houg. Mom welcomed Dad to heaven on April 24, 2019.
Mom is survived by her sisters Joyce (LeeRoy) Mann, Jeanie (Harry) Bickle, Jerriann Hanel, Janny (Dave) Parsley, Judy Lanterman, June (Mike) Vogt; brother Frank Hanel, Jr. (Tammie); brothers-in-law Dale (Kay) Houg, Doug (Royal) Houg; sister-in-law Marlene (Dewayne) Jager; children Marc (Janece) Houg, Becky (Rick) Fritz, Bruce Houg, Tonya (Mel) Paulson; grandchildren Rebecca Houg, Marjorie JoAn Houg, Dustin Houg, Benjamin Houg, Dina Fritz, Alice Fritz, Nastassja Burshia, Nicolet (BJ) Palmer, Lane Paulson, Britton Paulson, ten great grandchildren with another on the way, numerous nieces and nephews; and former daughter-in-law Angela Martinez Brotzman.
Mom was thoughtful and loving and will be greatly missed by all whose lives she touched. She was a spiritual woman who held steadfast to her faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. We know she rejoices in His open arms.