Philipsburg (and the World) lost yet another great old-timer.
Leroy Lavon Jacobson (Jake) was born December 5, 1941, in Whitefish, Montana to Ella and Leslie Jacobson. The youngest of seven children, he grew up on the family ranch in Whitefish- graduating from Flathead County High School in 1959.
He was born with a chainsaw in one hand, a fishing pole in the other. After high school, he moved to Philipsburg to work in the woods. Eventually buying the Post and Pole Sawmill from Charlie Bill and Jack Byam- he provided many local jobs.
The Great Outdoors were his passion (logging, hunting, and fishing) He balanced his time between there and hanging out with his “Pards” at the local watering holes.
This “gentle giant” brightened any room he was in. Always a nice guy, he was quick to share a great joke- keeping everyone giggling… He and Jack Byam even got little Angie sent to the principal’s office- by teaching her “The Monkey and the Badger” song. This is a great (and also “colorful”) song to be sung in the White Front Bar- NOT in 3rd grade, as an extremely surprised Angie found out the hard way.
In 1985 he accepted an Underground Mechanic position at Echo Bay Mines in Curlew Washington- so he was “West bound and down, loaded up and truckin”… Many of his “Pards” followed him there, so he basically never really left the ‘Burg. He enjoyed working with his buddies Doug Bayer, Loren Roth, and “Billy the Greek”- just to name a few. The Blue Cougar Saloon became their new local watering hole, and the place to tell good jokes and tall tales.
When retirement came within reach, he bought a Wood-Mizer portable sawmill and started Jacobson Lumber once again. He loved Ferry County and all the residents there, making many friends and cutting boards for most of them. He retired from Echo Bay Mines in 2004 at the ripe old age of 63 years young.
In 2007 Jake decided it was time to return to P-burg, so with the help of Jack Byam and his grandson Kyle, he was “East bound and down, loaded up and truckin”…
Back in his favorite hometown- he loved riding his 4-wheeler everywhere, skillfully co-piloted by his dogs Buster and Tito. If he wasn’t home cutting boards- he was in the hills cutting firewood, fishing the local lakes and streams, or having beers with his “Pards” and telling great (mostly true) hunting and fishing stories.
He had a smile that would light up a room, and a laugh that was more contagious than the common cold.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Leland (Brother), Marlene and Esther (Sisters), Sharon and Maurine (Sister-in-laws), Harry and Hal (Brother-in-laws), David (Grandson), Ruth Gursky (Mother-in-Law), Colleen Byam (good friend), also special “Pards” Curtis Smith, John “T-Bone” Welch, Lee “Beetle” Page, and Bill Butler.
He is survived by his daughter Angie and her spouse Jim Pederson, Leona Hileman (sister) of Whitefish, Elaine Thacker (sister) of Dayton Ohio, Allen Jacobson (brother) of Columbia Falls, Norman Jacobson (brother) of Missoula, and Ron Hulme (Brother-in-Law) of Kalispell, Jeff Perry (Stepson), Kyle (Grandson), Erika (Granddaughter), Jacob (Grandson), Shelbirae (Granddaughter), Kris (Grandson), and Justin (Grandson), and 8 great grandchildren. Also, many nieces and nephews who loved him dearly and learned many things from Uncle Jake.
He is also survived by many special friends including Jack “Bum” Byam (and his daughters Amy, Mary Jo, and Carrie), Barbara Hartman (and her daughters Sheila and Cheryl), Billy and Donna Mclean, Park and Sharon McLure, Tom Pysher, Don Schroeder, and many, many others. He is also survived by 2 estranged children.
We would like to give a special thanks to the entire staff at The Ivy at Deer Lodge Nursing Home, especially Shannon Bogner, Theresa, Laura, Amy, Kimmy, and Dr. Brown. Also, a special thank you to Frontier Hospice for the extra special care- in a very stressful time.
A celebration of life will be held at The Granite County Museum in Philipsburg on June 12, 2021, at 12:00 p.m. with a luncheon following the service.
Jake’s proud nephew- Brian Jacobson (U. S. Navy Chaplin) will be officiating.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made in Jake’s name to Braach Shepard’s for Veterans 501 (c) (3) or the Granite County Museum.
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