Alvin M. Neard, 85, of Sheridan passed away on Wednesday, October 26, 2011 at Westview Healthcare Center. This beloved gentleman is in the protection of Jesus’ care in peace and comfort.
Alvin Merle Neard was born in a large gray house at 7 South Gould Street in Sheridan, WY on a November 17, 1925 to Frank and Arlene (Tibbits) Neard.
He spent his childhood summers at his grandparents ranch eight miles northeast of Clearmont, WY, called the Pinhead. He started herding sheep and cows in this Big Horn Mountain Range mostly by himself at about eight years old and through his early teens.
One job he learned was the difficult task of driving a horse-powered hay stacker, which he tells about in one of his stories. As a very small boy he became a hardcore ranch hand. During the school year he attended Linden Elementary, Central School, and graduated from Sheridan High School in 1944.
Alvin met Phyllis Burley at a Christmas party in 1947 in a Sheridan home. They dated one year until Phyllis graduated. They married at First Christian Church in Sheridan on June 12, 1948. They recited vows during a double ceremony with Alvin’s sister Bernice and Kenneth Plum. All four honeymooned in Billings.
About four years later Alvin had heart surgery at the Mayo Clinic in MN with a 50-50 chance of surviving. With a healthy recovery he stayed in Sheridan to raise his family.
Alvin started as a foundry molder at Sheridan Iron Works in Sheridan while in high school. He was promoted to stock clerk, then later to office manager to general manager and finally the owner. He sold the firm and retired in 1991. He worked for this business for forty-seven years.
He was an active member of the First Christian Church for many years including the mens group, deacon, elder, teacher, and choir. He was a Rotary Club member since 1965.
In the early years he climbed hills and rocks including Steamboat Rock and Mt. Sye in Washington State. He was a Rotary deer hunting guide and enjoyed the sport on his own. He loved the mountains and country. He was a avid fisherman seen at Sibley and Desmet lakes, back streams and Tongue River Canyon. He knew all the back roads and mountains looking for rocks and driftwood.
He was on a bowling league for many years and played horseshoes. At home he enjoyed rug hooking, ornamental iron sculpting such as figures and roses. Every season he canned foods and made jellies. He had vegetable and flower gardens so pretty.
He wrote unpublished short stories about his youth experiences. He was an amateur photographer of everything, he carved and sold diamond willow walking canes, worked difficult puzzles, loved barbecuing outside, collected antique tools which he hung on the garage wall, and had cookbooks everywhere.
Alvin is preceded in death by his parents, sister Bernice Plum, two brothers; Jo and Oakley, one grandson, Frank Coey.
He is survived by his wife, Phyllis of Sheridan, Sister Lowene McNeece-Jones of Billings, MT, two daughters; Caroline Neard of Sheridan, WY and Janis Coey of Casper, WY, a son, David Neard of Sheridan, WY and grandchildren; Holly, Lita, Faith, Jolene, and Alex along with six great-grandchildren.
Services for Alvin will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, November 1, 2011 at the First Christian Church with Pastor Doug Goodwin officiating. Inurnment will be in the Sheridan Municipal Cemetery with a reception to follow at the church.
Memorials to honor Alvin may be made to the First Christian Church at 102 S. Conner St., Sheridan, WY 82801.
Online condolences may be written at www.kanefuneral.com
Kane Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.