[gn_heading style=”1″]Louis O. Aleksich[/gn_heading]
Louis O. Aleksich, Sr. passed on to his camp on Tuesday, July 24 at Valley Health Care Center in Billings.
Born and raised in East Helena, Montana he was the son of Serbian immigrants from Montenegro, Yugoslavia. He spoke Serbian fluently and often served as an interpreter for many new immigrants brought over to the United States and residing in Montana.
Lou worked in law enforcement most of his life. He was a Montana Highway Patrolman from 1943 to 1953 and resided in Plentywood, Miles City and Billings during that time. He served as U.S. Marshal for the District of Montana for 24 years. He served under six presidents and eleven attorney generals. No other Marshal in the history of Montana had more tenure.
He had a break in his service as Marshal when he and his wife, Ada, ran campaigns and the Montana Field Office for Congressman James F. Battin. The political organization they created and ran was noted as the most effective and successful in the state. He was involved in numerous Republican campaigns and active in Montana Republican politics.
Lou was always involved with his community. He served as state president of the Jaycees, president of two schools’ PTA, president and founder of the Montana-Dakota-Saskatchewan Peace Officers Association, member of Billings Kiwanis Club, member of the Yellowstone Country Club and enjoyed many years as a Mason and Provost Marshal of the Al Bedoo Shrine Temple.
After Lou retired, he took up golf and spent many winter months in Palm Desert, California and the rest of year in Billings. Golfing, hunting, fishing, and riding horseback in the backcountry were some of his passions. Lou was a native son who loved the people and the life of Montana. He loved to tell a good story and talk about the history. He was known for wearing a Western hat, cowboy boots, a bow tie and a smoking a cigar.
Lou was predeceased by his parents, brothers Mel Aleksich of Seattle and Bob Aleksich of Tacoma, Christine Vargo of Tacoma and his wife Ada (Schiavon) Aleksich. He is survived by brother Tonnie Aleksich of Tacoma, sisters Helena Shelley of Tacoma and Minnie Isler of Great Falls, Montana and numerous nieces and nephews.
He is also survived by his three children: Lou (Skip) Aleksich, Jr. (Kandace) of Red Lodge, Sandra Pedersen (Pete) of Cheyenne, Susan Akey (Larry) of Woodbridge, Virginia. Four grandchildren: Alexis Aleksich and Jennifer Bottman (Andy) of Portland, Oregon; Bryan Pedersen (Sara) of Cheyenne and Valerie Pedersen of Denver. He had one great-grandchild, Brock Pedersen of Cheyenne.
Cremation has taken place at Michelotti-Sawyers. Services will be held at the Mayflower Congregational Church in Billings on Friday, August 3 at 10:30 am. Interment will be at Forest Vale Cemetery in Helena. Memorials may be made to the Shriners Hospital for Children, P.O. Box 2272, Spokane, WA 99210.