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Ralph Victor Hult 1954-2016

Swan Song


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Ralph Victor Hult

POTOMAC - Ralph Victor Hult of Potomac passed away Feb. 7, after his long courageous battle with a rare lymphoma, surrounded by family and friends. This bright star was born in Hollywood, Calif., on Sept. 11, 1954 to Ralph and Virginia (Adams) Hult, the fourth child of seven to be welcomed into this world.

Ralph's early childhood was spent in Northern California, attending schools in Chico, Cohasset and Sterling City until the age of nine. When Ralph was nine, his grandparents, Ernie and Katie Adams wanted to take one of the children with them to Long Beach to live with them. His siblings voted him out of the family to go.

Ralph cherished these years with them. In 1967, when he was 11, the Hult and Whipple families decided to move to Montana to the Garnet area. Ralph attended Sunset School in Greenough until his father become ill in 1969. The family moved to Bonner, where he attended elementary school.

During Ralph's junior year at Sentinel High School, he left to join the U.S Navy. He was seventeen when he arrived on the U.S.S Bainbridge becoming a signal man. Ralph spent the next three years traveling the high seas and serving his country during the Vietnam War. After his stint in the navy, Ralph worked for various local ranches in the Potomac Valley, then odd jobs in the Deer Lodge area.

In 1975, while working as a bartender at the Soft Touch in Deer Lodge, Ralph's life was changed forever when he met the love of his life, Jolene Jacobsen. He always said, "I knew that was the woman I was going to spend the rest of my life with, even if it took me some time to convince her of that!!" Later that same year, Ralph and Jolene were married in Deer Lodge. The couple then relocated to the Missoula area. Ralph started what would be his long career in the logging industry.

In 1976, Ralph and Jolene welcomed their first of three girls, Hollie Lynn. Over the next four years, they welcomed Heather Jo in 1978 and Corrie Augusta in 1980.

Throughout the years, Ralph worked for various logging companies, finally finding his other home with Salmon River Wood in 1999. He enjoyed everyday working with his mini me Ralph Thompson. As well as Sam, Austin, Quentin, Mike, Val and all the other guys that worked alongside him in the woods throughout the years.

Ralph loved "his girls" more than anything but, in his spare time, Ralph could be found on rivers and lakes throughout Montana and Idaho fishing with his buddies. He also loved to hunt throughout Montana for various game animals. In his later years, Ralph enjoyed his yearly hike into the Bob Marshal with his son-in law Tripp, grandson Hunter and friends. He could also be found teaching his grandson Brayden to fish on local streams. One of Ralph's favorite things was to go on trips with his "shot gun rider" and best friend Jolene.

Ralph loved and lived life to its fullest. He loved his family, friends and profession. Ralph could rarely not find a person who he would classify as his friend. He will always be remembered for the kind person that he was. He would give you the shirt off his back and was always helping anyone in need. Anyone Ralph loved, he would call Big Guy.

Ralph was preceded in death by: his beloved daughter, Hollie; parents, Ralph and Virginia; brother David; his in-laws Harry and Dorothy Jacobsen and his best friends in life Jake, Mike, and Duke.

Ralph leaves behind his wife of 40 years, Jolene; daughters Heather (Tripp) of Seeley Lake and Corrie (Patrick) of Potomac; his grandsons, Hunter, Brayden and Paxten; brothers Dennis (Margaret) of Helena, Ernie and Eric of Potomac and Vincent (Sara) of Drummond; sister Tina (Brian) of Port Angeles, Wash.; sister-in-law Mona; sister and brother in-laws Kathy and Tom McElderry of Deer Lodge; Darlene and Orin Marsh of Boulder. He also leaves behind many nieces and nephews Chris, Kirsten, Victor, Trevor, Hannah, Jeremiah, Anastasia, Stephanie, Melanie, Katie, Janay, Krispin, Tyrell and Emma and many close friends Glenn, Gary, Mary, Rodney, Terri, Paula and so many more.

Ralph wanted a celebration of life. This will take place at the Missoula Alliance Church, 100 E Foss Ct in Missoula on Saturday, Feb. 27 at 3 p.m. with a potluck to follow. Ralph wanted a big party for him and this will happen at the family home in Potomac with a bonfire following the reception. Please bring lots of stories to tell.

The family would like to thank the Potomac QRU, the wonderful nursing staff at St Patrick's Hospital and Montana Cancer Center, his bosses Joe and Debbie, along with all his support group of family and friends that fought with him till the end.


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