Kelly Lee Gardner passed away peacefully in his sleep on November 8, 2018 after a courageous battle with cancer. Kelly was 76 years old.
Kelly was born on August 31, 1942 in Riverton WY to Louise Mazet Gardner and Eugene Gardner. Kelly was joined by his brother Jerry in 1945. The Gardner family lived on the 91 Ranch in Meeteetse WY for several years during Kelly’s childhood. The family moved to Belfry where Kelly attended high school. The Gardners then moved to Absarokee Kelly’s junior year. Being the self-sufficient man he was, Kelly chose to stay in Belfry to work for family friends and to finish high school. Kelly then graduated in 1960 a proud Belfry Bat.
After high school, Kelly moved to Fargo North Dakota to attend a tech school and become a mechanic. It was during this time Kelly and Marge met and were later married in July 1963. That same year, Kelly visited a high school friend in Miles City and found a position at Love Motors and their journey together began. In 1971 Kevin was added to the young family followed by Melissa in 1975. Kelly worked at the Ford garage until 1986 when he fulfilled a lifelong dream of owning his own business. Kelly’s Auto was a successful business until his retirement in 2016.
During his years Kelly was an active member of the community and supported many events and organizations. He was especially proud of being an ELKS member, trustee and member of the year. He loved hunting, fishing, golfing and spending time with his family. Kelly liked to start each morning with his coffee group at Gallaghers sharing stories and telling jokes. Kelly could be found on the weekends at a local restaurant having breakfast with his grandkids. He also loved to cheer on the Cowboy/Cowgirls sports teams. He spent many hours cheering on his grandkids during their various activities. He has attended many a little league baseball game, little guy football game, golf meet, and many dance recitals.
Kelly was preceded in death by his parents Eugene and Louise Gardner. Kelly is survived by his wife Marge, a son Kevin (Andi), daughter Melissa and brother Jerry (Linda) Gardner, nieces Nicole Gardner and Rachelle (Keith )Sayers and their families, grandsons Matthew and Ryan Gardner and granddaughter Jenna Gardner. Kelly is also survived by his aunts Jackie and Doris Mazet and numerous cousins.
The family would like to thank everybody that was instrumental in encouraging and supporting Kelly during his battle. A special thank you to Dr Fabregas and to all the nurses and staff at both Billings Clinic and Holy Rosary Hospital who cared for him. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Wake Up and Lace Up, 107 Balsam Dr. Miles City, MT. 59301.
Family to Receive Friends will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday November 15, 2018 at Stevenson and Sons Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held on Friday, November 16, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at Grace Bible Church. Condolences to the family may be sent by visiting www.stevensonandsons.com.