Cover photo for Dennis DeWeese's Obituary
Dennis DeWeese Profile Photo
1947 Dennis 2021

Dennis DeWeese

July 21, 1947 — October 17, 2021

Dennis DeWeese, 74, of Gardiner, Montana, passed away Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021, at his residence in Gardiner, which he lovingly built for his longtime wife, Betty.Dennis was born July 21, 1947, in Sacramento, Calif., the son of Gayle and Paul DeWeese. He and his younger brother, Frederick, spent countless family outings water skiing on Pyramid Lake after the family moved to Sparks, Nevada, marking the start of Dennis's love of outdoor sports.Dennis graduated high school and later studied art at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, CA, and at Montana State University in Bozeman. He specialized in printmaking.Dennis served with the United States Army in Korea during the Vietnam Era. During basic training, he met his late longtime friend, Bruce Cunningham, who shared Dennis's love of snow skiing, hiking, fishing, hunting, and camping. The two shared countless outdoor adventures.Dennis's parents purchased the Yellowstone River Motel in Gardiner in 1970, and it was while in Gardiner helping at the motel he met and later married the love of his life, Betty, who had moved to Yellowstone after spending summers in the area during her youth. The two married in 1973 and co-operated an art gallery called "Gallery of the Yellowstone", featuring Dennis's and Frederick's work, among other local artists. Later, Betty helped to run the family motel and raise two daughters with Dennis as he completed a 42-year career with the National Park Service in Yellowstone. His career in maintenance and later as a supervisor spanned from Canyon Village to Lake Village to Mammoth Hot Springs. He was known to be fun and fair to work with and was well liked by his many coworkers.After retiring, despite health challenges later in life, Dennis remained a doting father and husband and loved to travel. He particularly enjoyed the Caribbean Islands, the Oregon Coast, San Francisco, and New Orleans. He was famous for wearing Hawaiian shirts to all occasions, frequenting meetings of the "Gardiner Ski Club" at the Blue Goose Saloon, enjoying episodes of Saturday Night Live, and for being a quiet and kind man to all he encountered. He was supportive of his daughters' many endeavors including high school sports, 4H rabbit husbandry, scouts, music, and theatre. He taught them both to drive a stick shift and how to change a flat tire. He always tried to remain positive and upbeat for his family. Until the very end, one of his favorite pastimes was to float the Yellowstone River in "Easy Landings," the drift boat passed down to him by his father. Now, in the words of one of his beloved relatives, Dennis has departed for new territory and another river to float.Dennis is survived by his mother, Gayle Phillips, of Gardiner; wife, Betty DeWeese, of Gardiner; daughters Chelsea (Jordon Hirsch) DeWeese of Gardiner, and Nicole (Travis LeBow) DeWeese of Missoula.. Dennis is preceded in death by his father, Paul DeWeese; and a brother, Frederick DeWeese. Cremation has taken place, and a celebration of life with friends and family will be set to take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Dennis's honor to Gardiner Emergency Services Fund, PO Box 307, Gardiner, Montana, 59030
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