One Nation, Under God

Charles Elvin "Jack" Kendall (January 6, 1933 - June 6, 2024)

Charles Elvin "Jack" Kendall, 91, passed away in Lewistown on Thursday, June 6, 2024. He was born January 6, 1933, in Dodson, Montana to Charles E. "Charley" and Ruby (Noordam) Kendall. Jack had one half-sister, Emma Light.

Jack married Sylvia Turntoes of Hays, Montana in 1953. Four children were born of this marriage: Alvin (Peanuts), Wanda (Jeannie), Charlotte (Punky), and Karen. Jack and Sylvia were later divorced.

In 1972, Jack met and married Helen (McWhorter) Jones. They had one daughter Jill (Kendall) Hala and adopted son Dustin Kendall. He also gained five stepchildren from this marriage: Marian, Barbara, Jane, Debra, and Brian (Mike).

Jack inherited a ranch from his father when he passed away. This was down in the Missouri River Breaks known as the Kendall Bottom. But due to hardships, Jack lost the ranch and now it's part of the CMR Wildlife Refuge.

Jack then became a heavy equipment operator in his twenties, working on the highway that crossed the Missouri River at the Fred Robinson Bridge, as well as many other projects. He worked for Kewitt, Montgomery, Wicken, and Weeden Construction companies, and later for N.A. Sand Pegasus Gold at several mine sites. In 1981, he acquired his own equipment and worked on many projects for ranchers in the Central Montana area. He built dams for livestock reservoirs, repaired many existing dams, built and/or repaired access roads, cleaned ditches, etc. He said many times that "Doing dirt work is my hobby". A hobby that lasted well over 60 years until 2018 when he sold the equipment at the age of 85.

Jack attended various local schools, including Junior High in Lewistown. He also spent one year going to school in Butte. He left at 15 to start his life as a laborer and that ultimately became a career in equipment operation.

Jack loved to fly and flew many times with others. He would stand in the open plane door and dispense seed or weed control products. He also learned to fly a plane himself. He could land on any "dirt" surface but could not land on asphalt because he could not judge the distance to the runway. This problem prevented him from receiving his pilot's license.

He also loved having outboard motorboats and spent a lot of time on the Missouri River, lakes, etc. He enjoyed taking passengers to view the White Cliffs. One of his last voyages was with his deceased stepson, Mike, and his youngest daughter, Karen. They were taken to the Stafford Ferry and entered the river there. They completed the voyage at the Fred Robinson Bridge.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one son Alvin (Peanuts), one daughter Karen his half-sister Emma, and one stepson Brian (Mike). He is survived by his wife Helen of 52 years, daughters Wanda (Jeannie), Charlotte (Punky), and Jill, son Dustin, and stepdaughters: Marian, Jane, Barbara, and Debra. Friends: Francis Kolczak, Dan Willams, Wade Kinkelaar Wilson Stulc, John Muggli, Harold Hepner (Little Hoag), and Dan Moseman; as well as many nieces and nephews, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

No services will be held as per Jack's wishes. In lieu of flowers, we ask that you make a donation to the Hilger Fire Department or to a charity of their choice. Arrangements are under the direction of Cloyd Funeral Home. Condolences for the family may be posted online at


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