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Birth Announcement

Tom Tingle

ST. IGNATIUS — Tom Tingle, peacefully passed away at 90 years old on Jan. 20, 2024. He was born in Challis, Idaho, on Oct. 14, 1933, to Howard and June Tingle. He lived a full life dedicated to ranching, and education between Idaho, Montana, and Alaska. 

Tom was a man of adventure, hard work, and wit. He was a skilled storyteller, rancher and educator. He graduated from Salmon High School in 1951, attended Rick’s College and later attended Idaho state University. He worked for the U.S. Forest Service. Tom married Joanne Smith and they had three children: Stacy, Kris and Lisa Tingle. From 1953-1960, he operated ranches in Salmon, Idaho and Wisdom, Montana. He worked at Cobalt Mine from 1960-63. He went back to college at the University of Utah to get an education degree and went on to teach in Jordan Valley, Oregon. From 1966-67 he returned to college for a master’s degree in education administration and psychology. He taught school in Salt Lake City. The next nine years he worked for the Salmon School District as a counselor, high school and jr. high principal, plus operated ranches. He married Bernie Blodgett and had one child, Cori Dunavin. The next 12 years he worked as a school administrator in remote Eskimo villages in NW Alaska. During the summers he was a commercial fisherman in the Bering Sea. He and Bernie retired from full time work in Alaska in 1988 and returned to devote more time to the business of relaxation. Then the cow herd kept growing and the relaxation phase faded - didn’t seem to be able to kick the work habit … kept getting more calves to brand each spring; the garden jumped from a “plot” to an “acreage” and the schools in Bush Alaska were shorthanded, so he had to go back. 

Until 2004, “I was still working 3-6 months a year in very remote villages - walrus and whale hunters abound - super great experiences; still had a small ranching operation; still had a garden with enough surplus to feed the starving in Uganda; still trying to swing a golf club occasionally! A busy life but a good one! A few years ago, our daughter, Cori, her husband Scott, and their kids moved here and started getting their own cows and taking over ranching duties - thank goodness!”

He is survived by grandchildren, Lexa and Dak Leonard; Jantzen and Kaz Woolsey; Alix and Kylie Tingle; Caleb and Eli Dunavin; Tim Vial, Chance Walter, and numerous great-grandchildren. 

Tom wrote most of this short life story. 

A celebration of his life will be held at the ranch in St. Ignatius, on Saturday, June 22, 2024, at 1 p.m. All friends and acquaintances are warmly welcomed to join. The address for the event is: 64295 Sunflower Lane, St. Ignatius. The celebration will be followed by a pig roast with all the fixings. Please dress comfortably. Call Bernie Tingle at 406-745-0155 to RSVP or to ask any questions.  


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