Obituary Details

William "Billy" Marcus Reynolds

(10/17/1861 - 09/17/1930)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 09/25/1930

The funeral of William Marcus Reynolds, familiarly known to scores of old-time friends in this county as "Billy" Reynolds, was held in Lusk on Monday, September 22, at the Congregational Church, with Rev. Edwin Irwin officiating. Interment was made in the Lusk cemetery, arrangements being made by the Midwest Mortuary, and an impressive Masonic service held at the grave, under the auspices of Harmony Lodge, of which Mr. Reynolds was a charter member.

Ir was first announced that the funeral would be held Sunday, but due to the late arrival of the remains, the services had to be postponed until Monday.

A large concourse of sorrowing friends, many of whom had known Mr. Reynolds for forty years or more, came from far and near to pay their respects to an old-timer who was held in high esteem by all whose privilege it was to know him.

The pallbearers were H. Gautschi. R.I. Olinger, Harry Hargraves, Robert C. Ord, and R.L. ZumBrunnen.

A short but impressive service was held at the Congregational Church and the remains escorted to the Cemetery by members of the Masonic Lodge. At the grave the impressive Masonic service, at which Worshipful Master Earl M. Criss officiated, was said.


Wm. M. Reynolds, who was one of the pioneer cattlemen of Wyoming, and for many years a resident of Lusk, met his death at his ranch near Quemado, New Mexico, on September, 17, 1930, when the horse he was riding stepped into a badger hole while he was attempting to head a bunch of wild horses, and fell with him.

The cinch was broken by the force of the fall, and Mr. Reynolds was thrown together with the saddle in front of the horse, where he received the full impact of the falling animal. He received a broken neck, a broken shoulder, broken arm, broken ribs, a temple wound, and serious abdominal injuries. When picked up, he still had his feet in the stirrups and his hand on his saddle rope.

He was immediately picked up by his youngest son Russell, who was riding with him, and rushed to the nearest doctor at Springerville, Arizona. The accident occurred shortly after 6:00 p.m. and he lived until after midnight, and was conscious most of the time. He seemed to realize the end was near, and faced the issue of death with the same unwavering courage with which he had met the problems of life.

Mr. Reynolds was born of pioneer parents at Fort Riley, Kansas, on October 17,1861. His father was killed by a highwayman when "Billy" was 7 years old. When he was 14 he went to Texas, where he made several trips with large herds of cattle up the famous Texas Trail to various points in the northern states.

In 1887 he went to work for a large cow outfit at the Republican river near Champney, Nebraska, for whom he rode the ranges of Wyoming, Colorado, and Western Nebraska. At that time Ogallala was the principal shipping point for this section. In 1878 he went to work for the JHD outfit near Cheyenne, and later for the Node outfit near Lusk.

In 1881 he was married to Estelle Lizzie Goodwin at Cheyenne, Wyoming. Shortly after this he went into the cow business for himself on the head of Rawhide Creek, on what is now known as the Hobbs ranch, south of Lusk. A few years later he took a homestead on Lower Rawhide Creek. After a few years he sold this place to N.L. Wiggins and moved to the Newton Meadow ranch, two miles south of Lusk. Here he engaged in the Registered Hereford business and ultimately became one of the leading breeders of purebred Hereford cattle in the United States.

In 1914 he disposed of his holdings here and moved to Denver, Colo., where he lived until 1919, when he moved to Quemado, New Mexico, where he lived up to the time of his death.

He is survived by his widow, Mrs. Wm. Reynolds of Quemado, N.M.; two sons, Lewis Reynolds of Wanamaker , So.Dak., and Russell Reynolds of Quemado N.M., and one daughter, Mrs. Roy Martin, also of Quemado, N.M. Two grandchildren, Oliver and Virginia Reynolds, who live at Chadron, Neb., and two other grandchildren, Billy and Mae LaVergne Miller, live with their mother and foster father in California. He also leaves five brothers, four sisters and his step-father.

Mr. Reynolds was one of a family of ten children, and the first of the ten to pass away. At the time of his death he was 68 years and 11 months of age.


At the time of his death Mr. Reynolds was the oldest member of Harmony Masonic Lodge No. 24 of Lusk. He was initiated on February 2, 1899, passed May 2, 1899, into Ashlar Masonic Lodge No. 10 at Douglas, Wyo. At the time Harmony Lodge No. 24 was organized at Lusk, 1906, Wm. Reynolds being the first senior warden of the lodge. He was during his residence here an active and devoted member of the lodge, and in his daily life practiced as near as possible the precepts of the order of Freemasonry.

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Related/Linked Records

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Obituary Reynolds, William (1885 - 06/16/1899) View Record
Obituary Reynolds, Millen (1887 - 06/21/1899) View Record