Ronald Edward Popelka, devoted husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle and friend passed away November 8, 2020.
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Ron was born January 5, 1945 to Donald and Reva Popelka in Billings, Montana. He was raised on the family farm south of Acton. On September 21, 1963, he married his life-long partner Janice Kallem. Ron and Janice raised four children, Raymond, Beverly, Don, and Scott.
They eventually took over the family farm until Ron retired and they relocated to Huntley, Montana. He has always talked about the fact that his cow sales topped all markets when he sold out. Ron enjoyed hunting. There was always that competition to see who would get the deer or elk that was the best of the year, or overall. One of his happiest moments was when he shot his 6-point bull. Ron also enjoyed many paddle fishing trips to the Missouri with family and friends. Catching a big one was definitely the goal. When not hunting or paddle fishing, Ron spent many days camping and fishing at some of the best spots in Montana.
He traveled to both coasts within the same year, went fishing in Canada a couple times, and even rode a submarine and walked in the ocean with his cowboy boots on.
Ron did not only take pride in being from Montana, but also to only have lived in Yellowstone County. He was a role model to all and always there when anyone needed a hand, as long as you didn’t expect him to be far off the ground, as heights was something he did not see eye-to-eye with, but you could always count on him when you needed him, even if it was just a call to say “hello”, he was always there.
Ron was someone who felt everything should have its place, and you better put it back in that place when you were done with it, or he would know. Oh yeah, and it better not be sticky or have anything on the handle that he might accidently touch. When trying to explain something to Janice, he would start by saying “now just wait a minute, just listen”. In the end what he was trying to explain was most times correct.
Ron was definitely someone to look up to. His pride and trust meant everything to him and it showed in everything he did and everyone he met. If you met Ron, you would not likely forget him. He left that lasting impression.
Ron leaves behind his wife of 57 years, Janice; their children Ray (Pam) Popelka, Beverly Grimm, Don (Carolyn) Popelka, Scott Popelka; 8 grandchildren, Amy (Lynn) Morse, Dallas (Torie) Cornish, Johnathan Popelka, Levi (Brenda) Popelka, Cody Popelka, Breana (Lane) Grimm, Jared Popelka and Carter Popelka; 13 great-grandchildren, Kaleb, Haidyn, Taner, Quincie, Kaylee, Tristen, Hailey, Trey, Ashlyn, LynkN, Izzie, Whitney, and Roslyn; son-in-law Michael Grimm; daughter-in-law Lisa (Peter) Popelka, many nieces and nephews, and more friends than you could even list.