Leon C Odegaard

Leon C Odegaard, 79, of Red Lodge, Montana, passed away peacefully March 30, 2018 surrounded by love after a brief battle with cancer. His devotion to his family and firm belief in God supported him in his struggle and ultimately gave him peace.

Leon was born Aug. 26, 1938 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to the late Wesley and Audrey Odegaard. He was an avid outdoorsman, enjoying hiking, skiing and traveling whenever he was not working or enjoying his many social and volunteer pursuits.

He attended Billings Senior High School and as a Sigma Chi graduated from the University of Montana in Missoula.

For most of his career he worked as a pharmacist in Absarokee and alongside his family at Odegaard’s Drug and Hardware Store (“Your Everything Store”) in Billings, Montana. He also worked at Osco, Kmart and Albertsons, and elsewhere before his retirement. He moved to Red Lodge 10 years ago.

Some of his personal achievements included being the president of the Montana State Pharmacy Association, chairman of the American Heart Association, and board member of the Red Lodge Senior Center; he also was an active member of the Kiwanis and Lions, Absarokee Jaycees, and the Order of Arrow. He was a U.S. Army reservist for seven years, participated in the Boy Scouts, the National Jamboree, and Christikon Camping Ministries. He was particularly honored to assist with the Eagle Mount disabilities ski program. Finding any excuse to ski, he volunteered with the Nordic and Beartooth Ski Patrols and hosted at Red Lodge Mountain. Some of his most important accomplishments included climbing mountains and running marathons. Although he climbed several peaks (Granite, Whitetail, Gallatin to name a few) his most cherished was Mt. McKinley (Denali).

Leon’s greatest joy was to spend quality time with his family and traveled often to see them. He was married to Deanna with whom he had four children, Laura to whom he was a step-father to two children, and loved spending time with Maureen, his Red Lodge companion. He was a very social person considering his quiet nature and he touched many individuals with his kind, accepting and teasing manner. He found it quite humorous to be interviewed on youtube.com; see under ‘Iconic Person Leon Odegaard.’

Leon is survived by his brothers John and Paul, children Sherrie Wilson, Cindy Runzler, Kathy Klopfenstein and Shawn Odegaard; grandchildren, Max, Cody, Koryne, Michael, Marina, Amelia, Justin and one great grandchild, Brooks, and too many close friends to count. His sister Aliene Drews and parents precede him in death.

Memorial service will be held at Messiah Lutheran Church in Red Lodge at 3 p.m. on April 14, 2018. Leon’s ashes will be committed alongside Wesley and Audrey at the Billings Sunset Memorial Gardens at 1:30 p.m. on July 21, 2018, along with a celebration of life to follow at the Veteran’s Park from 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Leon’s special interests. Prayers, condolences and memories will gladly be accepted on Leon’s Facebook page or mail to 17420 NE 31st St, Vancouver, WA 98682.

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Upcoming Events

  • Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - 9:30am
    Open 2nd and 4th Wednesday 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. and from 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. 206 N ‘D’ Street. More info 662-1060.
  • Thursday, November 15, 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, November 15, 2018 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Monday, November 19, 2018 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, November 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, November 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.

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.