GRASS RANGE — Dewey Steve Matovich, 84, of Grass Range, Mont., passed away Tuesday evening, Dec. 17, 2013, at the Central Montana Medical Center from complications of pneumonia. Dewey was born Jan. 20, 1929, near the mouth of the Musselshell River at Meccah, Mont., to Dan and Matilda (Sarich) Matovich. When he was very young, the Matovich family moved to Canada, traveling in a covered wagon. They lived near Hanley, Saskatoon for three years before returning to Montana in 1934. He began his primary education at Meccah. Dewey did not speak English when he began first grade, but was helped by his cousins who also attended school there. The Matovich family then moved to Piper, Mont., where he attended school through the eighth grade. He attended high school in Lewistown, Mont. Dewey’s love of the land and cattle led him to his life in ranching and raising children. In 1951 he married Dorothy Brown. They ranched near Grass Range while raising ten children. He had children in the Grass Range school system for 33 years. He was happiest while on horseback and being with his children and grandchildren. In 1983, Dewey was named “Father of the Year” by the Today in Montana show. Dad was a quiet man with big hands and a big heart. His greatest joy was having his family gathered around him.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Dorothy of Grass Range; his children, Jean, (Loyd) Bantz of Grass Range, Tilda Whiteman of Richey, Helen Jones of Grass Range, Mark (Karen) Matovich of Grass Range, Eva (Todd) Foran of Winifred, Gary Matovich of Grass Range, Larry (Angie) Matovich of Grass Range, Mary Lou (Tony Joe) Stulc of Winifred, Ann (Kraig) Bergum of Roy, and Diane (Tim) Keefer of Forsyth; his sister Eva (George) Birdwell of Lewistown; special cousin, Andrew Zdunich of Hanley, Canada; special friend Garnett Bacon of Lewistown; 33 grandchildren; 39 great grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his sister and her husband Mary and Chug Moseman; and his brother and his wife, Dave and Maxine Matovich.
Funeral services for Dewey S. Matovich will be Friday, Dec. 27, at 11 a.m. in the Grass Range School gymnasium with interment to follow in the Grass Range Cemetery. Visitation will be held Thursday evening in the Cloyd Chapel in Lewistown from 5-7 p.m. Cloyd Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.
Memorials may be made to the Central Montana Medical Center ER Remodel Project, Grass Range Fire Department, or the charity of one’s choice and may be left at the Cloyd Funeral Home.
Condolences for the family may be posted online at www.cloydfuneralhome.com