Peyton H. Terry

Peyton Terry entered the world on Aug. 23, 1923 in Wolf Point. He was the third child of James E. and Maude (Stone) Terry. Peyton left this world on April 12, 2015. His gifts were apparent at an early age and he used those gifts throughout his life. Peyton was a salesman. As a youngster he was the 7th highest grossing salesman for the Literary Digest in the United States. Peyton was a showman. He loved to be in front of a crowd. As the drum major for the Wolf Point High School Band, he made state news by tossing his baton higher than the Sherman Hotel and to the amazement of all, he caught it. He won honors as a member of the speech and debate team.

Peyton was dependable and a hard worker. He held down several jobs as a youngster and used his hard earned cash to help send his sister to college. He graduated Wolf Point High School in 1941 and attended the University of North Dakota. He returned home to work on the Milwaukee Railroad, to farm and later as the sales manager for Hovey – Stone Chevrolet. On July 2, 1950 he married Connie Whitmus. They spent 64 years working together and supporting each other through the good and bad times. Peyton and Connie were blessed with three children, Cheryl, Paula and Joel. In 1955 Peyton moved his family to Glasgow where he purchased a partnership with Frank Helland in the local Chevrolet dealership. A. J. “Tony” Hoffmann became his partner in 1957 and in May of 1966 he bought out his partner to become the sole owner of the Terry Chevrolet Buick until selling the business in 1978.

In 1970 Peyton and Connie purchased two local movie theaters. The Survant Theater burned in August 1982, reopening July 1983 as Terry’s II Theaters. They subsequently opened Terry’s II Video in the spring of 1985. In 1998 Peyton and Connie moved to Red Lodge and in 2004 they moved to Billings into a neighborhood of wonderfully caring and special people. Service to one’s community, state and nation were important to Peyton. He lead, he supported, he sold, he believed, and he worked for the success of each organization he joined.

Some of his achievements and recognitions include: President of the Glasgow Auto Dealers Association, President of the Glasgow Kiwanis Club, President of NEMARC (Northeast Montana Association for Retarded Children), Chairman of the Regional Council for Developmental Disabilities, Chairman of Valley Industrial Park, Inc., Chairman of the Board for Milk River, Inc., President of the Montana Theater Owners; 1990 Distinguished Service Award Recipient of the Montana National Guards, 1973 Boss of the Year. Peyton held many offices of the Aledoo Shrine and completed all of the chairs of the Masonic Lodge. Peyton worked tirelessly for local, state and national Republican candidates.

He was privileged to know Senators, Congressmen and Presidents. In 1972 he attended the National Republican Convention as an alternate delegate. His faith was at the center of his convictions. He served several churches, sang in the choir and worked many Methodist Men’s Ham Dinners. Peyton is preceded in death by his mother Maude, father Jim, sister Bess Hovey, brother Jim “Bub” Terry, and son Joel Terry. Peyton is survived by his wife Connie Terry of Billings, Cheryl Terry of Red Lodge, Paula Terry of Glasgow and 5 grandchildren Keeton, Teagan, Isabella, Rose and Bess Martin.

Peyton lived a long life, he influenced many, he loved and was loved by his family and many friends. A friend once described Peyton as a “class act”. He was that and much more. As a man of small stature, he left a big imprint on the hearts and lives of those he knew. Ever the poet Peyton penned “When the good Lord calls us home and we cross that Great Divide, I hope to meet my Savior face to face and say “Sweet Jesus, my life has been a wonderful ride.” Services were held on Thursday, April 16 at 11 a.m. at Grace Methodist Church in Billings. Memorials can be made to the charity of your choice.

Upcoming Events

  • Tuesday, February 20, 2018 (All day)
    The Red Lodge Carnegie Library will be closed, Feb. 20 in observance of Presidents' Day. It will reopen, Feb. 21.
  • Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - 5:30pm
    Red Lodge Call to Action (RLCTA) meets the third week of each month from 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. at Honey's Cafe. Non-partisan and open to all, the purpose of the group is to empower our community to be effective activists on local, state and national issues. The next meeting will be Feb. 20.
  • Tuesday, February 20, 2018 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, February 22, 2018 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, February 22, 2018 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 24, 2018 - 10:00am
    An Overeaters Anonymous group will meet every Saturday at 10 a.m. at the Grace Fellowship Church, Absarokee.