Odell “Buzz” Allen Aldrich

Thursday, August 15, 2019
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Odell “Buzz” Allen Aldrich, 88 years old, of Joliet, passed away fittingly on our Nation’s birthday, July 4, 2019 at the Richardson Cottage in Laurel, Montana, where he had been a resident for the past 17 months.

He was born Nov. 5, 1930 in Doland, South Dakota to Dorothy (Coopersmith) and Ira Aldrich. He married Evelyn Heer on Nov. 19, 1951 in Doland, South Dakota, and together they raised five children, moving several times before settling in Joliet, Montana, in the early 70’s. Dad always said his favorite places to live were Hot Springs, South Dakota, and Joliet, Montana.

Buzz was drafted into the Army during the Korean War, serving on a survey crew in Germany. He utilized his GI Bill and graduated from South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota, with a degree in Civil Engineering. He was also part of their college wrestling team, Go Jackrabbits!

Dad worked for the U.S. Government, transferring many times before retiring from the Soil Conservation Service in Joliet in 1985. He was instrumental in completing the Cooney Dam spillway; the Metra Park upper parking lot and many bridges and dams in the area. After retirement, he started Buzz’s Turf, designing and installing many, many underground sprinkler systems throughout Carbon County and Laurel. It was a family affair and everyone has a humorous “Buzz” sprinkler story.

He was passionate about community service and was a long time member of the Joliet Lions Club, starting the flag program to raise money for college scholarships; a proud board member of the Beartooth RC&D, helping to create the Joliet Community Center; served on Joliet Town Council; National Weather Service volunteer; Boys and Girls Club, and Sacred Heart church council. He was a faithful member of St John’s Catholic Church. He supported youth sports and activities and rarely missed watching his grandkids compete. He also never missed an opportunity to drive to the post office, store, and bank; often several times a day!

He leaves behind his children; Marlowe (Peg) Aldrich of Billings, Renee (Ben) Carlson of Roundup, Arlin (Patty) Aldrich of Lynwood, Washington, Rich (Donna) Aldrich of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Monica (Russ) Salo of Joliet. Grandchildren Sam (Becky) Carlson, Brand (Cheyenne) Aldrich, Parker (Jae) Aldrich, Kate Aldrich, Jake Salo, Hayley Aldrich, Colton (Deveney) Salo, Ashleigh Aldrich and Noah Salo, along with 10 great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife of 66 years, Evelyn.

Because Dad never wanted anyone to have to “hitchhike home on the weekends”, as college is “no cake-walk”, memorials may be given to the Buzz & Evelyn Aldrich Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Joliet Public Schools, Box 590, Joliet, MT 59041, to continue to promote higher education, which he was so passionate about.

Graveside services, with military honors, will be Saturday, Aug. 17, at 10:30 a.m. at the Rockvale Cemetery with a luncheon to follow at the Joliet Community Center. In honor of Buzz’s patriotic and community spirit, please wear red, white and blue, or his favorite, John Deere green.


Upcoming Events

  • Monday, September 16, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, September 17, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, September 19, 2019 - 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, September 19, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, September 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Saturday, September 21, 2019 - 11:30am
    Ross Orchards, located at 111 North Street in Fromberg, is proud to announce the opening of a farm stand this Fall. The orchard will be open Saturdays from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Sundays noon - 5 p.m. starting Sept. 21 and closing Oct. 13. The orchard is working in conjunction with the Last Chance Pub and Cider Mill and Red Lodge Ales to offer fun, family-friendly events.   Every weekend apples, fresh apple cider pressed with apples from the orchard, apple pastries, local honey, food, hard cider, and beer will be available.  There will also be pumpkins and a variety of local produce for sale. Additionally, each weekend will have a different event. Sept. 21 - 22 – Cider and Salutations yoga 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Sept. 28 – A farm to table dinner at 5 p.m. catered by the Last Chance Pub’s chef Kevin McNourlin. The dinner will feature local foods paired with cider. Contact info@lastchancecider.com to reserve seats (limit 40) Oct. 5 - 6 - Kidz Dayz. Bounce house, pumpkin carving, face painting and tractor rides through the orchard. Oct. 12- Orchard run 5k. A family-friendly run/walk through Ross Orchards. Visit redlodgeales.com/orchard-days to sign up. Sam Hoffmann, President of Red Lodge Ales, remarked, “it has been fun to get to know John, Laura, Hilary, and Elizabeth Ross over the last ten plus years. Together we have pruned, picked apples, and made cider on a home brew level and now commercially. We are proud to share our work with the public.” John Ross, owner of Ross Orchards, adds, “The orchard has always been a source of pride and happiness for me.  Our family has enjoyed working with Sam and Lindsey Hoffmann and their employees. We look forward to the success of Orchard days.” Contact for more info: John Ross 406-671-9614, johnwalkerross@gmail.com; Sam Hoffmann 406-425-4607, sam@redlodgeales.net; Lindsey Hoffmann 406-425-3734, lindseyhoffmann406@yahoo.com  

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.