Maheo called Lonnie Ray Flatness, Lone Elk…home on July 3rd 2020. Lonnie was born November 29, 1954 to Kermit and Dorothy (Harris) Flatness in Billings, MT. He grew up in Alderson Gulch on the Flatness ranch. He attended St. Labre. After graduating he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps through the buddy system with his best friend/brother Wayne Tallbull on February 14th which was known as their first anniversary. After serving four years in the Marines he was honorably discharged and returned home to Alderson Gulch maintaining the Flatness Ranch running cattle and horses. He was a man of many trades he worked numerous jobs in construction, housing, Colstrip power plant and lastly the facilities manager with the BIA. Lonnie was always quick to volunteer to help when fires broke out on the reservation.
Lonnie was well known for his cowboy skills. He traveled and raised cain along the rodeo circuit riding bulls. He qualified for the INFR numerous times and was even featured in the “American Cowboy” magazine. After retiring from the bulls he continued to be active in the rodeo circuit being a pick-up man with Marvin Woodenlegs and often times they provided more entertainment than the rough stock. He could also be found running the hills with the guys chasing wild horses and cattle. He was always laughing and joking trying to ensure everyone was having a good time.
He will always be remembered as the tough love type of father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend, saying “long ways from your heart”. His door was always open, and he was always willing to lend a hand. He would even give you the shirt off his back. Lonnie had a big heart and he was always taking in his children’s friends and other youth as his own providing support and encouragement.
Lonnie is survived by his daughters LaShawna Beartusk, Shawnta’ (Ian) Flatness, and Codylace (Stephen) Not Afraid-Gardner. His sister Doreen Pond, nephews Richard (Billie) Foote Jr, Leland (Kendallynn) Pond. Neices Diane (John) Pond, Ricarda (Bob) Hanson and Alyson Flatness. Grandchildren: Kairell, Keenan, Kaiden, Penny G, Micahlyn, MyLeah, Cassidy, and Cheyenne. Others he took as his extended children: Lashanda Hargrove, Maraya BlessingGame, Tracy Jo Schweigert, Josh Sioux, Mikey Sioux, Jesse James, Colt Littleowl, Michael “Tracy” Charette Jr.
Lonnie is preceded in death by his parents Kermit & Dorothy Flatness, brothers Kermit “Ole” and Edward Flatness. Sisters Roberta “Sister” Foote and Sherri Lou Flatness. His son Tyson Flatness.
The extended family include: Flatness, Harris, Peppers, Kinzel, Standing Elk, Johnson, Beckman.
He had many more as he had such a big heart we apologize if anyone was left out.