The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

Richard Austin


Richard Austin rode off into the sunset on May 8, 2017. He was born on December 6, 1931 in Glasgow Montana. He was delivered at home by his Aunt Alice, and joined brother, John to complete Cloris (Bailey) and George Roy's family. He had a happy childhood growing up during the depression, he was lucky to have a stable home life. His father worked for the telephone company and his mother filled in as an English and Latin teacher. He and brother John had many childhood escapades. He liked to tell of the time they put skunks in the hall just before the Malta High School prom. He made several lifelong friends and often went to Glasgow for school reunions. After graduating from Glasgow High School in 1949 he attended Northern Montana College in Havre. There he met his first wife Ethel Adams - they married in 1952.

He was in the Air Force from 1951-1955 where he worked in Intelligence and learned to speak Russian. During that time they had daughter Dianna in Texas, and Cheryl (Rachael) in Virginia. After being discharged he returned to school at the University of Montana where he graduated with a business degree. They lived in Glasgow for a short time where daughter Shauna joined the growing family. He loved the western part of the state; they returned to Missoula where daughter Vickie completed the young family. There they resided for 15 years raising their family. One of Richard's favorite activities was to load up all the kids and go for a drive, often taking backroads wherever they led, sometimes hours later. The adventure usually ended with ice cream cones for all. Another favorite memory is of going camping at Placid Lake where they spent most weekends in the summer. He and our Uncle Dick would spend hot afternoons drinking beer and messing around with a boat and motor (that often did not work), and taking the many children water skiing. He was a member of the Masonic Order, Shriners, the Moose, Eagles and Elks. He worked for Larry Larson Insurance Company for 15 years before the love of big equipment and trucks lead him to change careers. He built a mobile home court and several campgrounds.

He moved to the Coram where he built another campground. He started Dick Austin Construction with a front-end loader, a rock crusher and a 12-yard dump truck and ended his career with a fleet of fire water tenders.

During this venture, he met his future wife Sue. Together they raised another daughter, Jennifer. Sue was his partner for 24 years before parting ways. They later reconnected and were companions until the end.

Richard was very adventurous and loved going for drives. In his golden years, he went back to his childhood ways and purchased a Honda Goldwing trike. He was always out cruisin'. It was common on a warm summer evening to find Dad and a couple of buddies sitting on the front porch shooting the breeze, then they would all jump up, hop on their bikes or scooters and head down to the river front road. He loved going for rides in Glacier Park, and once counted coup on a bears' butt!

Richard loved his Honda trike and was a member of the American Legion Riders Post #27 in Arizona. He was a true patriot and loved displaying the American flag on his restored classic trucks during parades. He was also a member of VFW Post #9399 in Apache Junction.

Dad was preceded by his mother and father, Cloris and Roy Austin, brother John and wife Betty Austin. He leaves behind five loving daughters, their children and many great grandchildren. Dianna and Al Lundy (Abigail and Sam); Rachael Austin and Charles Dalby (Kelsey); Shauna Austin (Shelby, NikkaRose, Mallory); Vickie and Brent Goertzen (Bethany, Rebecca, Amanda, Brian Osborn and Cheya Goertzen); Jennifer Austin. Also niece and nephew D'Arla and Jack.

Happy Trails Dad, may you find open roads, blue skies and have the wind at your back.

There will be a memorial service Wednesday, June 28 2 pm at the Moose Lodge in Kalispell.


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