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WHITEWATER- Arnold “Ike” Hellie, 95, a lifetime farmer and rancher, passed away October 25, 2016 at the Phillips County Hospital of natural causes.

    The family will welcome visitors on Monday, October 31 at Kirkwood Funeral Home between 5 and 7 pm. Services will be held at Kirkwood Chapel on Tuesday, November 1 at 1 pm, followed by interment at the Hellie Family Cemetery on the farm north of Whitewater. Refreshments will then be served at the North 40 Café in Whitewater at 4 pm. Friends and family are welcome at all of the events celebrating Ike’s life. Condolences for the family may be left at

    Ike was born in 1921 on the Hellie homestead north of Loring. He spent his childhood in north Phillips County, and attended Whitewater High School, graduating in 1940. Ike married Stella Carlson in Creston, Washington on June 24, 1941. They returned to Montana, residing in Glasgow for a few years. They then returned to the Whitewater-Loring area where Ike and Stella farmed, ranched, ran a rural mail route, operated several businesses, and raised their 5 children. When at age 92 he couldn’t climb up into the tractor any longer, he maintained his interest in trends in farming, ranching and politics, continued to play his guitar, and carried on the family tradition of being a National Weather Service weather observer.

    Ike loved the Whitewater community, and was proud of any contributions he could make toward improving the town and the school. He insisted that he never worked a day in his life; it was all too much fun to be labeled as work. The family farm was Ike’s paradise; he built a wonderful life and legacy for himself and his family and was a devoted steward of his little piece of the world. He was a very good farmer, successfully weathering good years and bad. Ike was humble, honest and decent; his word was his bond. We children truly thought he walked on water, and we are forever proud and grateful that we can claim Ike Hellie as our Dad.

    Ike is survived by his son Michael of Whitewater, daughters Kimberly Hellie and Lorraine Hellie both of Malta, Eileen Richardson of Havre; sister Vivian McMullen, grandchildren Ray (Christine) Field, Jason (Courtney) Hellie, Addam (Tayler) Hellie, Mikita Hellie, Jill Smith (Denis Girard), and Colton Richardson, as well as 11 great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. Ike was preceded in death by his mother, Nora Hellie Brown, his wife Stella, son Vernon, son-in-law Mike Richardson, brothers, Andrew, Roy, Alfred, Barney, Art, and Earl and sisters, Hilda Brown and Ann Omdahl.

Guest Book

From: Tanja Fransen

Arnold has been a part of the National Weather Service since December 1951 when he took his first observations. While I only met him once when we recently presented him with an award, his data will long stand as a historical record of climate for NE Montana. The dedication these observers give is not recognized for the value that it truly is. Thank you Mr Hellie for all your dedication to reporting weather in our region. Those forms will remain forever.

Guest Book submissions may be made using the link to the left.