Our father, grandfather, brother and friend, passed away on March 3, 2020, in Bozeman, Montana, succumbing to pneumonia and complications of surgery for lung cancer.
Roger was born on September 1, 1941 to Nile and Annie (Feberwee) Terwilliger in Malta, Montana. He was a star athlete, lettering in basketball and football, and helped to set several track records. He also served as an officer in several school organizations.
In August 1959 he joined the Montana National Guard. He worked his way up through the ranks, retiring on March 24, 1993 as a Major. Roger had many great stories of his time in the Guard, and was so proud to have served. Roger was also an outdoor enthusiast and enjoyed hunting all over the state of Montana.
He began his career in the construction industry serving as Foreman or Superintendent for various construction companies across Montana and Wyoming. While working in Wyoming, he met his first wife, Tanya, they married in 1966. She brought two children from a previous marriage, Laurie and Jeff, whom he loved and raised as his own. Daughter Gena came along in 1968, completing the family. They moved to Bozeman in 1969, Roger and Tanya divorced in 1981.
Roger married Jan Recor in 1986, though they later divorced, together they ran and operated Superior Concrete. His foundations and flatwork were the basis for homes and businesses all across the Gallatin Valley. Roger was also a great mentor to his crew, many of whom went on to start their own successful concrete businesses, including his son, Jeff. Roger taught us all the value of a hard day’s work, working himself sun-up to sun-down until his retirement in 2010.
Roger retired to Townsend, Montana, and immediately immersed himself in the fishing community. He was an avid walleye fisherman, winning several fishing competitions on the Montana Walleye Circuit. Among his many posts and volunteer activities, he served as Assistant Director for the Canyon Ferry Walleye Tournament and President of the Gallatin/Madison Chapter of Walleyes Unlimited. Roger also helped coordinate the annual Montana Walleyes Unlimited Work Day, gathering Christmas trees in the Bozeman area and making fish cribs to be placed into the reservoir to enhance perch spawning habitat. Roger was inducted into the Walleye Hall of Fame on February 22, 2020.
Roger is survived by his brother Ron (Mary) Terwilliger of Post Falls, ID, and sisters Nancy Terwilliger-Grube of Missoula, and Norma Coulson of Cheyenne, WY. His children: Gena (Mike) Stimatze of Bozeman, Jeff (Wendy) Swendseid of Bozeman and Laurie (Bruce) Barnhart of Bozeman. He also leaves behind eight grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, one great-great grandson and his many great friends.
Cremation has taken place. A celebration of life will be held September 6, 2020 at Canyon Ferry, location TBA. Roger requested his ashes be spread at his favorite fishing spot at Canyon Ferry Lake.