George “Ben” Larango passed away peacefully at his home on March 29th from natural causes. He was born in Livingston, MT on March 21, 1938 to George Sam Larango and Mary Lucille Lopez. He graduated from Boys Central High School in Butte, MT in 1956. Ben enlisted in the Army in 1957 and served his country until 1960. On October 7th 1961 he married the love of his life Mary Louise Dow of Spokane, WA. Ben and Mary Lou settled in Missoula, MT where they raised three children. His various jobs included stints at MT Power Company in Butte, MT Cahill Mooney Construction in Bonner, MT and M & S Construction in Missoula, MT. In June 1971, Ben along with his wife Mary Lou became owner and operator of Missoula Fire Equipment, which they ran together along with all three of their children until March 1994 when they sold the business. Ben was a pillar of the community. He worked as a bailiff for Missoula County from 1995 to 2009 which he enjoyed immensely and always had good things to say about the judges and court clerks that he worked with. He was also a member of the Missoula County Reserve Deputy Sheriff’s department from 1974 to 1998, Badge #5. He enjoyed going out ’copping’ as he called it, and his kids knew that they had to behave or be more creative about not getting caught misbehaving on those nights.
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Ben was a board member with Crime Stoppers for 19 years, and a chair person at various times as well. Ben worked at the Western Montana Fair from 1974 to 2010 and in 1998 he received a lifetime free admission pass to the fair for his 25+ years of service. He was also a volunteer member at the Missoula Police Dept for 5 years.
In 1968 on a Sunday drive Ben and Mary Lou came across a cute old cabin for sale up Rock Creek that they fell in love with. They scrimped and saved in order to make that $46 monthly payment on the Rock Creek Family Cabin, now known as The BEN-LOU which became and still is one of the family favorite hangouts. In fact, his last visit to the BEN-LOU was opening day of the hunting season 2018 where he spent 2 nights with his daughter and son in law “watching” the deer, fishing and sitting around the campfire.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 44 years, Mary Lou, his sister-in-law Penny and both of his parents.
He is survived by, his sons Robert Larango of Alaska, Jerry Larango and wife Diane, of Missoula, and his daughter Pamela Wright-Larango and husband Falyn both of Missoula. Three grand children Jenna, Jacalyn, and Nicole and two great grand children Benny, who is named after Ben and Zack. Brother Sam Larango of Butte, MT and numerous extended family members. He is also survived by his significant other and his side kick for the last 14 years Pam Nybo, he truly enjoyed spending time with Pam as well as her children Perry and Andrea along with Perry’s wife Breanne and their Son Tanner.
There will be a Rosary on Wed April 3rd at 5:30pm followed by a vigil at 6:00pm both at St Anthony’s Parish. A funeral mass will be held on Thursday April 4th at 11am also at Anthony’s Parish, a reception will follow in the church social hall. In lieu of flowers, a donation to the charity of your choice in his name is recommended.