Richard Hayes

March 11, 2020 12:41 PM

Richard Hayes, 73, passed away at his home in Columbia Falls on Feb. 24, 2020.

Richard Raymond Hayes was born on Dec. 14, 1946 in Butte to Dorothy and Robert Hayes. He lived in Butte until 1958 when his family moved to Seattle where he attended school and graduated from Chief Sealth High School in 1965.

Rich was a Boy Scout and achieved the Order of the Arrow recognition. He defended our country in the Vietnam War from 1967-68 and also spent a year stationed in Germany while in the Army. After his service in the military Rich eventually joined the Carpenter’s Union in Seattle, and then moved back home to Montana where he went to work for Swank Enterprises as a superintendent, from which he later retired. Rich was very proud of the work that he did and loved to show his family and friends the projects that he was working on. He was the superintendent for jobs such as the Columbia Falls Junior High School, Kalispell Toyota and the Hungry Horse Ranger Station, to name a few.

Rich had many loves — most of all his family. Rich was an avid Mariners and all-around baseball fan. He also loved fishing, hunting, exploring and just taking in the beauty of nature. Rich was a mentor to so many — he loved to teach people the game he loved (baseball) and the trade he mastered (carpentry).

Rich married Leslie Dorgan in 1976 in Seattle, Washington. Together they welcomed their daughter Jessica (Jessie) in October of 1981. Although Rich and Leslie divorced, they remained best friends for the rest of his life. He was married to Lana Norris from Great Falls from 1996-2009. Jessie was “the apple [of Rich’s] eye.” Jessie married LaMonte Moultray in 2005 and LaMonte was quickly welcomed by Rich as family. Rich’s pride and joy were his four “grand-girlies.” He would quickly well up with tears when speaking of any of his four granddaughters, ShaiLynn, Jayna, Madison and Kendal.

Rich was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Dorothy Hayes, and his brother, David Hayes. He is survived by his daughter Jessica Moultray and her husband LaMonte Moultray, four siblings: Barbara “Bobbie” (Don) Anderson, his double brother (blood brother and Vietnam brother) Edward (Patricia) Hayes, Carol Hayes and Vincent (Michelle) Hayes; four granddaughters: ShaiLynn, Jayna, Madison and Kendal Moultray, his ex-wife and friend for life, Leslie Hayes; and Dillon Hayes, along with many nieces and nephews, several cousins and great nieces and nephews; and Lana Norris and her three children, Thomas Williams, Daniel Williams, and Rebecca Scarbro.

A memorial service for Richard with military honors will be at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 14, 2020 at Columbia Mortuary in Columbia Falls.

Columbia Mortuary is caring for the family.