James "Randy" Craig, 53, enjoyed hunting, fishing and boating, most especially with his two sons and his wife. Randy will be remembered as a generous man who was kind to anyone and everyone.
In recent years, he built log furniture and many pieces were given to family and friends to grace their door steps and homes.
He was a collector and staunchly defended his collections from those who thought of it as junk. He loved tinkering and welding.
Randy passed away unexpectedly after a short illness on Thursday, June 10, 2004, at St. Vincent Healthcare, Billings.
At the time of his death, Randy spent his life living between Ballantine and Roundup.
He was born on Feb. 25, 1951, in Billings to Albert and Ellen (O'Connell) Craig.
Randy was involved in scouting and attained the highest merit of Eagle Scout. He was a champion Golden Glove Boxer and a wrestler, was an excellent swimmer and scuba diver.
He attended two years of school at Assumption Abbey in Richardton, N.D. Then during high school, he was a janitor at Holy Rosary Church in Billings.
He graduated from Central High School in 1969. He attended college in Seattle for two years.
Randy had an interesting and varied work history performing many crafts and skills.
He gandy-danced for the Milwaukee Railroad, horseshoed in Roundup and at Yellowstone Downs. He cowboyed on the Barney Murnion and the Ray Shaw ranches near Jordan. He fished on the crab boats in Alaska. He logged near Roundup. He was a firefighter in the Missouri Breaks.
He was a driller and relief tool pusher in New Mexico, Wyoming and Montana oil fields and most recently in Indonesia. He retired from True Oil of Casper, Wyo., in 1985.
Randy was a member of the Painter's Union Local 1922, where he worked at the Cenex, Conoco-Phillips and Exxon-Mobil refineries. He also painted at the Colstrip power plants and worked on the Continental Pipeline.
On Sept. 19, 1975, he married Kathleen S. Miles in Tucson, Ariz. Their life became full and rich when two sons were born, Ezra Lee and Forrest Wells.
Randy is survived by Kathy, his wife of almost 29 years; his son, Ezra Lee (Jaclyn) Craig of Desert Hills, Ariz.; son, Forrest Wells Craig of Billings; and two beautiful grandsons, Chance and Dakota. These two grandbabies were pure joy to Randy.
Randy is also survived by his brothers, Pat Craig of Hardin, Mike Craig of Gardnerville, Nev., Tim Craig of Billings, John (Scheila) Craig of Gardnerville and Don Knaub of Billings; sister Annie (Lindy) Smith of Kalispell; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father, Albert; his sister Linda O'Connell and his brother Larry Craig.
Vigil for Randy will be at 7 p.m. Monday evening, June 14, at the Dahl Funeral Chapel, Billings.
Funeral services will be Tuesday, June 15, at 11 a.m. at St. Bernard's Catholic Church on Wicks Lane in Billings. Interment will follow at the Miner's Cemetery near Roundup.
Memorials will be made to the donor's choice or to the Randy Craig Family, PO Box 64, Ballantine, MT 59006.
Dahl Funeral Chapel of Billings is entrusted with the arrangements.