Everett Ray Robison Jr 91 of Lewistown, passed away peacefully December 4, 2020 at the Billings Clinic Hospital, in Billings, Montana. He was born May 14, 1929 in Caney, Kansas, the son of Everett Ray Robison Sr and Myrtle Alice (Kilgore) Robison. He was welcomed by sister Betty, sisters Alice and Sheila (Pat) and brother Donald (Donnie) followed. His brother David was stillborn.
Ray, as he preferred being called, always had an adventurous heart. He fell in love with Montana on a trip with his uncles Gene (Sonny) and W.C. Kilgore and his grandparents. They visited his uncle Dave Kilgore in Lewistown. Ray told his uncle Dave that if he could find him a job, he would move up to Montana. In the spring of 1948, uncle Dave called Ray and told him that he had a job for him as a lineman. The next day, he took the next bus to Montana. He thought he was going to be playing football, instead they had him climbing communication poles for the railroad. Ray had a crew of men that worked for him. After he was done with work, he would often bake pies for his crew. He worked as a foreman on the Chicago, Milwaukee, St Paul and Pacific Railroad for 18 years.
Ray was an amateur archaeologist and worked with members of the Montana Archaeological Society. He loved exploring and because his job on the railroad took him to remote areas of the state, he found many Indian artifacts, tepee rings, arrowheads and a cave that is named after him, Robison Rock shelter.
Ray served his country in the United States Army, Company B, 4th Signal Battalion,10th Corp, in Korea, achieving the rank of Sergeant. He had two Bronze Service Stars and a Korean Service Medal.
Ray continued working on the railroad after he returned from the service. He met his future wife Helen Jean Egger in Lewistown and they were married on December 10, 1955 in Lewistown. Their first born was a daughter, Rhonda Jean in 1956, daughter Julie Ann was born in 1958 and son Edward (Eddie) Ray was born in 1960.
After the railroad shut down, Ray decided to move to Washington state in 1968 and became a commercial fisherman, owning his own boat. He worked as an electrician for Boeing when he wasn't fishing. He later moved his family to Eureka, in Northern California and continued to fish. He fished for Salmon, Dungeness crab and Albacore tuna, traveling great distances to warm waters and as far as San Diego and Alaska for salmon and crab. He used to tell his family about some of the crazy creatures he had seen in the ocean. He also told of living through “A Perfect Storm!” He would say “It's just wind and water, but sometimes the mix gets a little rich!”
When Ray retired from fishing, he worked for his son in law John Ligon, as a maintenance supervisor at L & L Products in Michigan until his retirement.
Ray was an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed hunting all of his adult life. He enjoyed being outside and sleeping under the stars. In his younger years, he loved to fly fish and tied his own ties. Archery was one of Ray’s passions. When retirement brought him back to Lewistown, he joined the National Field Archery Association and the Lewistown Bowhunters Association and taught youth archery for many years. Several years he won awards as Bowhunter of the Year. For many years Ray traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada to participate in the World Archery competition, known as “The Vegas Shoot.” He took fourth in the World in his class one year.
A dear friend of Ray’s, Vaughn Esper needed help as a camp cook for his hunting cabin. Ray volunteered his time to cook. Ray loved the camaraderie with Vaughn and the hunters, often sharing stories of his life and adventures with the hunters and sharing hunting stories with his family.
Besides youth archery, Ray loved supporting The Boys and Girls Club of Lewistown.
Ray is survived by his two daughters, Rhonda (Vann) Brauning of Lincoln, CA, Julie (John) Ligon
of Paradise Valley, AZ; one sister Pat Clark of Edmond, OK and his dear uncle Gene
Kilgore of Havana, KS.
He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Betty, wife Helen, son Eddie, mother-in-law Wyvle Potterf, granddaughter Jenny Robison Smith, brother Don Robison, brother-in-law Robert Clark, brother-in-law Bill Phillips and sister Alice Phillips. He has 7 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren, many nieces and nephews.
A graveside service with military honors and a celebration of Ray’s life will be held at a future date.
Cremation has taken place and Cloyd Funeral Home is assisting the family with details.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Lewistown Bowhunters Association to benefit youth archery or Lewistown Boys and Girls Club. These may be dropped off at Cloyd Funeral Home in honor of Ray. Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com