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William Henry Drugge

William Henry Drugge, 86, passed away from natural causes on Friday, May 24, 2024. A Funeral Mass will be held Friday, June 7, 2024 at 10 a.m. at St. Gabriel Catholic Church in Chinook, Montana.

Bill was born in Havre, MT to Oscar William and Hilda Montana (Hofeldt) Drugge on December 8, 1937. He grew up on his parents' farm in Zurich and attended Zurich Elementary School. In 1955 he graduated from Chinook High School.

August 3, 1957, Bill married Duan Musgrove at St. Gabriel's in Chinook. They farmed and ranched east of Chinook and raised their three daughters. For the better part of 50 years they worked as partners, raising hay, wheat, sheep and beef cattle. Bill never wanted anything more than to be on the place, working to grow crops he could be proud of and livestock that he had a tendency to pamper. Chores came first. He always fed the livestock before he fed himself. Christmas morning was no exception. He always had lots of help that morning because opening gifts waited until all the livestock was fed too.

Bill was a good neighbor and a good friend who was always ready to lend a hand. He was a favorite with all children. He was "Uncle Bill" to the neighborhood kids and to many, who are now, neighborhood grownups. The early morning hours usually found Bill sitting at the kitchen counter, contemplating his day, reading the lambing notes left for him by Duan, who was always the night man, covering scraps of paper, front and back, with "figures" or maybe just playing a hand or two of solitaire. He enjoyed a good cup of coffee. He enjoyed it even more if it came with conversation and a cookie or two.

He served his community on the Zurich Irrigation Board, the Hi-Line Wool Pool and the Milk River Sheep Association.

He loved his family deeply and always wanted the best for his daughters and grandchildren. When his children were grown, he looked forward to their visits, especially once grandchildren came along. When the grandkids were small, the first thing he would do when they arrived was scoop them up and take them to see the latest happenings - bum lambs, new calves, freshly planted crops, or an alfalfa field that was ready to be cut or baled. Duan was occasionally able to get him to travel to visit one of the girls and their families but he much preferred everyone gather at The Farm, as the grandkids call it. Bill and Duan were able to travel to Great Falls to meet the newest addition to the family, great-grandson Oscar James Bronec, last fall when he was just a month old.

Along the way Bill had a couple of pets who shared his bad habits; Lucky, a sheep with an affection for Lucky Strike cigarettes, and Shadow, a dog that shared a pinch of Copenhagen whenever she could. His daughters have lots of good memories of Saturday mornings, listening to Grassroots Gold on the pickup radio while headed to check on irrigation water, fix fence, feed cows or sheep, or whatever needed to be done that day.

Bill was preceded in death by his wife of sixty-six years, Duan, his parents, Bill and Hilda Drugge, and his oldest sister Patricia Macmillan.

He is survived by his sister, Dorothy Hendrickson of Great Falls,MT, his brother, Lennie (Judy) Drugge of Zurich, his daughters, Deanna (Terry) Gilmore of Zurich, Shawna (Kevin) Dorwart of Glendive, MT and Melisa Drugge (Patrick) of Pendleton, OR, his grandchildren, Dakotah (Michael) Bronec of Great Falls, MT, William Dorwart of Great Falls, MT and Saige Dorwart of Rochester, MN, and his great grandson Oscar Bronec.

Memorials are suggested to St Gabriel Catholic Church or Blaine County 4-H.

Arrangements by Wilderness Funeral Home in Chinook.