Ray Dolatta passed away quietly on Sunday, April 5, 2009 at the Idaho State Veteran’s Home in Boise, Idaho at the age of 94. Ray was born on January 9, 1915 in Graceville, Minnesota to Raymond J. and Elsie O. Dolatta.
Ray’s parents moved to Terry, MT when he was only 14 months old where he lived and worked on his parent’s ranch on the north side of the Yellowstone River. He attended rural schools through the 8th grade. He worked for the CCC’s (Civilian Conservation Corps) during the Great Depression building forest roads in the Missoula, MT area and then fought fires with the corps around Salt Lake City, Utah. He broke horses, worked cattle and herded sheep for several years in the Brockway, MT area before being drafted for service during World War II.
During the war, Ray was attached to the British 2nd Armored Infantry division under General George Patton. He was captured shortly after entering the European theater and spent 6 ½ months in a German POW camp in France and then Holland. He was honorably discharged from the service in 1945.
He returned home again in 1945 and again began working on ranches in the Brockway area. He moved on to work for Clarke Construction building dams, including working some on the Fort Peck project, and building roads in the Sidney oil fields. Later, after starting a family, he drove bulk delivery trucks for the Farmer’s Union Trading Company for 10 years and was last employed by Prairie County as a heavy equipment operator for 8 ½ years.
Ray married Jacqueline DiCioccio in Hartford, CT on October 20, 1956. Ray and Jackie built a home in Terry in which they raised their three children, Raymond John, Joyce, and James. Ray continued to ranch on the side on a section of land north of Terry. Ray and Jackie enjoyed many wonderful years of retirement which they spent visiting their children and grandchildren. Jackie passed away in November of 1992.
In 2001, Ray moved to Boise, Idaho to live with his daughter and son-in-law. He entered the Idaho State Veteran’s home in November of 2005.
Ray was preceded in death by his wife Jacqueline, his parents Raymond and Elsie, and a brother, Adrian (Scorio). He is survived by his brother, Cliff Dolatta of Terry, MT, a sister, Lillie Thomason also of Terry; his children Raymond John of Terry, MT, Joyce Dolatta Brewer and husband, Sidney Brewer, of Meridian, Idaho, and James Edward of Miles City, MT; four grandchildren Curtis Dolatta of Yucaipa, CA, Amber Dolatta Johnstone of Miles City, MT, Tara Dolatta of Miles City, MT, Jayme Dolatta of Yucaipa, CA; a great grandchild, Jaysin James Dolatta of Yucaipa, CA, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held Friday, April 10, 2009 from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Stevenson & Sons Funeral Home in Terry. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, April 11 at 11:00 a.m. at the Terry Community Presbyterian Church in Terry, Montana with internment following at the Prairie County Cemetery. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Stevenson and Sons Funeral Homes of Miles City, Montana.