Perry Edmond Van Orden passed from this life on January 12, 2021. He was born in Livingston, Montana on September , 30, 1930 to Velford Merrill Van Orden and Effie Della Perry. He was the second oldest in a family of 7 children. He grew up on a farm during the early part of his life and enjoyed many outings traveling to see his grandparents Russell Holley Perry and Effie Della Waggoner Perry who lived on a farm on Willow Creek. He spent a lot of time with his grandparents as a young child and loved going out to see them whenever he could. His parents taught him to work as he had many chores on their farm and helped care for the younger children as they came.
At age 13 he ran away to see the world and by the age of 17 had joined the Navy to travel the world. He talked often of his escapades as a sailor and a young man. He eventually moved back to Livingston and went to work at the mine at Nye Montana. This is where he met his wife, Lela Marie Ferguson. They were married on August 12, 1956 and lived 64 years together raising their family. They had two children, Donna J. Delich (Warren) and Hollie Ericksen (Jan) and did a lot of camping and hiking over the years while raising their children.
Perry went to work for the railroad and retired from the railroad in 1988. He had transferred to Glendive when the railroad went out of business in Livingston and when he retired came back to Livingston to be near family. He spent most of his life in the Livingston area.
Perry was raised in the LDS church and after marrying his wife Lela became active in the church and spent a lot of time serving in many callings. He had a strong faith in the Lord and was a very humble man. He taught his girls his faith and shared the strength he found in his faith with his family and friends. He also had a wicked sense of humor that he shared with his friend Jerry Spalding and others that he spent time with. Perry found joy in serving his church and spending time with his family. He adored his grandchildren and spent many hours with them playing and teaching them different things. He liked to grow things and take care of his yard and loved hiking and camping and spending time in the wilderness. He backpacked a lot with his wife and children before they left home and then he went backpacking in the back country with his friend Jerry Spalding.
Perry was preceded in death by his parents, Velford M. Van Orden and Effie Della Perry Van Orden; his sisters Evelyn Chase and Joyce Ovind; his brothers Velford Van Orden, Paul Van Orden, and Monte Van Orden; his grandparents and various aunts and uncles. He is survived by his daughters, Donna Delich and Hollie Ericksen; his sister, Barbara Shandy; his grandchildren, Miranda (Robert) Mason, Dustin (Ericka) Juvan, Jared Ericksen, Erin Ericksen, Russell Ericksen and Katie Ericksen; his great-grandchildren, Alanis Zigler and Arriana Davis; his great-great-granddaughter, Kinsley Juvan; and various nieces and nephews.
Dad will be missed by all who knew him.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, January 23, 2021, 11:00am, at The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints, 110 W. Summit Street, Livingston.
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