Cover photo for Raymond Keith Shackleford's Obituary
Raymond Keith Shackleford Profile Photo
1938 Raymond 2018

Raymond Keith Shackleford

May 24, 1938 — April 22, 2018

Ray (Keith as those in high school knew him) left this world April 22, 2018 after a courageous battle with colon cancer. Ray was born May 24, 1938 in Chetopa, Kansas to Raymond Wesley Shackleford and Genevieve Alvia Beck. Ray and his mother moved to Nekoma, ND where she met and married Burt Otto Bakken. The family moved to Opheim, MT where Ray grew up. Ray always enjoyed working starting at the age of 14 as a teletype operator for the Great Northern Railroad. Ray excelled in school participating in music, sports and any club he could belong too. He loved playing the trumpet and played in a dance band. He graduated in 1957 as co-valedictorian. While in high school he met the love of his life, Laura Jean Rafter. They were married February 1, 1958 in Idaho Falls, ID. They moved to Bozeman where he attended Montana State College graduating in 1961 with a Bachelor of Science in Education. He began his teaching career that year in Wyoming and then moved back to Bozeman where he taught math at Bozeman Senior High School for many years. He then moved into administration and eventually worked for the State Superintendent’s office. After leaving the education field he worked for several years in private business. He finished his work career serving the community by working for the Salvation Army. Ray and his wife Laura raised five children. He was a member of Bozeman Lodge #18, Lily of the Valley #4 Order of Eastern Star, the Algeria Shrine, White Shrine of Jerusalem and Kawanis, as well as a long-time member of the Bozeman United Methodist Church. He always loved attending all the grandchildren’s activities, helping with math homework and working on his computer. He will always be remembered as a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, teacher, mentor, hero and friend.

Ray was preceded in death by his parents, his in-laws Bud & Dee Rafter, sister in-law Mary Helen Bakken, brother in-law Clark Zastrow and grandson Adam Evans.

He is survived by his wife Laura of Bozeman, and children Karen (KC) Barnhardt of Bozeman, Laurie (Billy) Bellew of Atlanta, GA, Allison (Mike) Chesnut of Belgrade, Kristine (Mike) Peterson of Belgrade, and Rob (Jennifer) Shackleford of Manhattan, brother Robert Irving Bakken of Havre, cousins Ardin Beck of Post Falls, ID and Sandra Oliver from Florida, brother in-law Garry (Sherri) Rafter of Helena, sister in-law Mary Zastrow of Trego, brother in-law Bill (Barbara) Rafter of Spokane, WA, 14 grandchildren, 16 great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services will be held on Saturday April 28, 2018 at 11:00 AM at the Bozeman United Methodist Church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Bozeman Health Cancer Center, 931 Highland Blvd #3130, Bozeman, MT 59715, Bozeman Health Palliative Care, 915 Highland Blvd, Bozeman, MT 59715 or The Shriners Hospital for Children, 911 W. 5th Ave, Spokane, WA 99204, or to a charity of your choice.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Raymond Keith Shackleford, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, April 28, 2018

Starts at 11:00 am (Mountain (no DST) time)

Bozeman United Methodist Church

121 South Willson Avenue, Bozeman, MT 59715

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