Obituary Details

Eugene Parkhurst Willson

(07/21/1891 - 10/12/1985)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 10/16/1985

Eugene Parkhurst Willson

Eugene Parkhurst Willson, a lifelong resident of this area, died Saturday, Oct. 12, 1985, at the Niobrara Memorial Nursing Home. He was 94.

Mr. Willson was born July 21, 1891, to Eugene Bigelow and Isabel Mack Willson on the Running Water Ranch. He attended school on the ranch before finishing grade school in Manville and graduating from high school in Salem, Mass. He was graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1912 with a degree in civil engineering.

He worked for Burlington Railway. The construction of a railroad tunnel near Guernsey was one of his projects.

He joined the Army in 1918 and was sent to France the day the Armistice was signed. He returned to his homestead on Harney Creek north of Lost Springs. He worked with the Union Oil Company at Lance Creek and helped his parents on the Running Water.

He courted Marie Valentine Lipe, a nurse who had come from Kansas in 1925 to care for an older aunt and then spent the summer working with his sister on her homestead, which adjoined his. They were married Sept. 12, 1925.

They made their home on the Harney Creek homestead. They moved to Manville after seven years and remained there until 1937, when they moved to the Running Water Ranch. They operated the ranch until retiring to Lusk in 1972.

Mr. Wilson enjoyed fishing and hunting and outdoor life at the ranch. He enjoyed camping and rock hunting with his wife and polished rocks as a hobby. He also liked working with wood and made items such as pencil holders and boats from cedar fence posts from the homestead.

He is survived by his widow, Marie of Lusk; two sons, James of Lusk and George of Laurel, Md., three daughters, Mary Jean Wilson of Sundance, Phyllis Hahn of Lusk and June Willson of Worland; a brother, Fred of Denver, 17 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

Memorial services were held Tuesday at the Lusk Congregational Church. A private family ceremony will be held to place the cremated ashes at the Harney Creek homestead.

Images & Attachments

Picture courtesy of Anne Willson Whitehead, author of Willson Brothers Running Water Ranch: The Homestead Cabin Story
Eugene and Marie Willson celebrated their golden wedding anniversary in 1975
Photo courtesy of Joshua Brackett's Eagle Scout Project

Related/Linked Records

Record Type Name
Obituary Willson, Mary (07/01/1905 - 08/04/2006) View Record
Obituary Koontz, Edna (02/02/1894 - 10/30/1963) View Record
Obituary Willson, Lois (07/07/1934 - 01/03/2007) View Record
Obituary Willson, Marie (02/14/1900 - 06/02/1992) View Record
Obituary Willson, Frederick (12/13/1898 - 11/22/1996) View Record
Obituary Willson, James (07/26/1931 - 03/16/2001) View Record
Obituary Willson, Isabel (09/20/1865 - 09/19/1955) View Record
Obituary Willson, Kenneth (03/06/1896 - 07/03/1980) View Record
Obituary Willson, George (11/01/1848 - 06/11/1931) View Record
Obituary Willson, Eugene (10/18/1852 - 01/28/1935) View Record
Obituary Koontz, Harry (05/25/1884 - 06/12/1959) View Record
Obituary Lipe, George (07/14/1872 - 02/07/1949) View Record
Obituary Hahn, Merle (03/02/1927 - 10/28/2010) View Record
Obituary Willson, Maxine (12/04/1902 - 06/14/1988) View Record
Obituary Wilson, Mary (07/16/1926 - 12/21/2011) View Record
Obituary Lipe, Maude (05/13/1874 - 11/17/1955) View Record
Obituary Willson, Annie (11/19/1862 - 07/19/1959) View Record
Obituary Willson, Edmund (06/16/1856 - 10/21/1926) View Record
Obituary Willson, Helen (08/20/1845 - 06/29/1927) View Record
Historical Organization of Niobrara County, author unknown. View Record
Historical Historical Tidbits View Record
Historical From a Pioneer Album - Isobel Willson View Record
Historical From a Pioneer Album - Katie Sothman Hitshew View Record
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Historical Willson, Eugene P. View Record