HARLEM - Paul Pershing Ashton, 86, died after a short illness on Friday, March 11, 2005, at his residence surrounded by loving family.
A funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday in Saint Thomas Catholic Church with burial following in the Harlem Cemetery with military honors. Rosary will
be recited at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in St. Thomas Catholic Church.
Paul was born on Dec. 29, 1918, in Laconia, Ind., to Harry and Lula (Dannacher) Ashton. He graduated from Laconia High School in 1937. In 1939, he moved to Montana and worked on the Jess Conrad wheat farm south of Chinook.
Paul later returned to Indiana and married Evelyn Jean Larmer. They had two daughters. During World War II, Paul served in the U.S. Army Air Corps. In 1956, Paul returned to Montana to farm in the Milk River Valley with brother Jim Ashton.
Paul married Cecile Streber in 1965 and they were together until her death in September 2004. He retired from farming in 1975 and soon opened Harlem Tire and Service. Paul served as a respected member of the community in Lions Club, VFW, St. Thomas Catholic Church, Businessmen's Club and Seed Show. One of his proudest accomplishments was helping to build the Airmen's Memorial. Paul will be missed for his spring tulip display and gardening skills.
Paul was preceded in death by his wife, Cecile Ashton; brothers, Jim, Virgil and Tom Ashton; stepson, John Streber, Jr.; grandsons, Joseph Paul Rattey and Patrick Warwick; granddaughter, Shae Baird; and son-in-law, Gordon Azure.
Survivors include his daughters, Sondra Ashton of Poulsbo, Wash., and Judy Ashton of Billings; stepchildren, Thomas (Deanna) Warwick of Missoula, William (Beth) Warwick of McMinnville, Ore., Joseph (Georgia) Warwick of Redondo, Calif., Ann Azure of Harlem, Barbara Kay (Curtis) Baird of Sitka, Alaska, Mary Jean Schultz and Patricia (Donald) Ford, all of Great Falls, Jacqueline (Steve) Black of Butte, Jeanine (David) Nichols of Bremerton, Wash., and Annette (Tom) Ragsdale of Harlem; daughter-in-law, Joyce Streber of Lewistown; sisters, Mary Bierly of Elizabeth, Ind., and Virginia Bell of New Albany, Ind.; brother, Ralph Ashton of Louisville, Ky.; many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Memorials may be sent to the Bear Paw Hospice's in Havre or Saint Thomas Catholic Church.
Arrangements are by Edwards Funeral Home of Chinook.