On Sunday, March 28, 2010, Rubert P. Meadows, age 90, of Polson, Mont., stepped into his last and best garden.
Rubert was born on June 28, 1919 in Charlson, N.D. the second son of Joseph E. and Rosa P. Meadows. He spent his childhood in McKenzie County attending school and working on the family farm where he grew to appreciate what the earth had to offer when properly nurtured.
Rubert enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1942 where he trained as an aircraft instrument specialist and mechanic. He was a veteran of World War II and later served in the U. S. Army during the Korean War. It was during that time that he met Hilda Eleanor Starkey Hall in Andalusia, Ala., and they were married in 1951.
The couple moved to Watford City, N.D. where Rubert farmed until he moved his family to Charlo, Mont., in 1955. There he operated a small dairy farm and worked on several other farms in the area. He also was employed by Cenex for several years, running the small engine repair shop.
Following Hilda’s death in 1988, Rubert moved to Polson to be closer to his daughter, Shirley, and her family. There he promptly put down roots, about an acre of them, as he happily gardened away at his home on Kerr Dam Road.
In 1993, Rubert married Dorothy Spang. They later divorced.
Rubert greatly enjoyed watching baseball and football and, although he never set foot on the UM campus, he was an avid Grizzly fan. He was a league bowler for many years and a champion cribbage player. Along with his keen wit, he possessed a natural writing and storytelling ability. Rubert also had an amazing facility with numbers and dates and could very likely tell you what the weather conditions were on any given date fifty years ago. But it was his gardening prowess that provided him with immeasurable contentment. He was determined to work the soil again and on March 17 he planted the seeds for his favorite variety of tomatoes. His family and friends will truly miss sharing his bounty. Rubert was also an Honorary Life Member of the American Legion.
Preceding Rubert in death were an infant daughter; his parents; his wife, Hilda; a sister, Rose Boots and her husband, Lawrence; sister-in-law, Ruth Meadows; stepson, Robert Peyton Hall; an infant grandson and infant great-grandson. He is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Shirley and Mike Gunter, Kalispell; his son Jim Meadows, Denver; stepson William Hall, Corpus Christi, Texas; his grandchildren Lauri (Steve) Pulley, Jeff (Jen) Patterson, Lindsay (Greg) Minarik, Jordan and Justin Patterson; Joseph and Ellie Meadows; and Tavenner Hall (Thad) Starner and four great-grandchildren. Rubert is also survived by two brothers, Raymond, Stevensville; and Keith (Lenore) Edmonton; and sister Ruth (Bob) Sunderland of Edmonton; seven nieces and four nephews and wonderful, compassionate friends, Bruce and Jane Patterson.
Cremation has taken place and a memorial service will be held at a later date. Memorial donations may be made to The Arbor Day Foundation or Disabled American Veterans Charitable Service Trust. Messages of condolence may be sent to the family online at www.groganfuneralhome.com.