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Bill Buhl of Libby

| July 23, 2013 12:27 PM

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Obit Buhl Two

Bill Buhl died at his Libby home July 16, 2013, with family by his side. 

He was born in 1933 in Butte to Frank and Ann Sullivan Buhl. His grandparents were immigrant Irish miners and German farmers. 

Bill attended school in Butte, Valley View, Deer Lodge, Whitehall and Anaconda.

As a youth, he worked for Western Union as an auto parts stock boy, delivered groceries and as a ranch hand in Waterloo, Wisdom and in  the Deer Lodge Valley.

When the Korean War broke out, he was working in the hayfields for Mount Hagin Land and Livestock Co. As soon as the hay was in, he joined the Marines.

He was a demolitions expert in Korea working with mines and booby traps. In 1953, he re-enlisted to attend explosive ordinance disposal school then married his sweetheart, Jean Monaco. He transferred to the infantry in 1956, returned to his hometown of Butte as a recruiter in 1958, and in 1962 received orders for MCRD, San Diego.

He was deployed to Vietnam in 1966 and served as a patrol leader with the 3rd Recon Battalion, 3rd Marine Division. During that time, he received the promotion from gunnery sergeant to first sergeant and then to second lieutenant on the same day. 

In 1969, he returned to Vietnam serving with the Vietnamese Marine Second Infantry Battalion and Long Range Recon Company. In 1970, he changed his status to captain, USMC retired.

After his retirement from the Marine Corps, he began a new career as a union structural ironworker. In addition to working on the Libby Dam, he worked throughout the Northwest and Canada, retiring in 1991 as a journeyman.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his brothers, Frank, Bob and Francis; his sister, Gerry Schonsbert, and his son-in-law Larry Hill.

Bill leaves behind his wife , Jean; his daughters, Jenie Hill, Linda (Dennis) Day, Billie Jo (Curt) Jones; his son, David; his sister, Catherine Satterlee; his grandchildren, Coby (Deann Farrell) Spencer, Kara (Gary) Hirzel, Michael (Ashley) Day, Kelli (BJ) Purdy, Ryan (Jaime) Jones, Travis (Megan) Jones, his nine great-grandchildren, Sophia and Addison Spencer, Kasen and Saraya Day, Tessa and Lawson Purdy, Gracie Jones; and his beloved pets, Leroy Brown, Maggie, Nikki, Bert, Abby, Pippa and Charlie.

The family invites friends to gather for a remembrance at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 27,  at Fred Brown Pavilion, Libby.

Memorials may be made to Kootenai Pets for Life or a charity of the donor’s choice.

Semper Fi.