Marvin Oden Olson, 96, passed away on Dec. 10, 2019, in Billings.
He was born on June 20, 1923, to Oden and Florence Olson in Doland, South Dakota. After his eighth grade year, the family moved to Livingston. He graduated from Park County High School in 1942. Marvin then worked for the Northern Pacific Railroad as a fireman until he enlisted in the Navy on Dec. 7, 1942. After boot camp, he completed the Diesel Curriculum Course at the Naval Training School in Chicago. His assignment to LST 493 led to his participation in the Normandy Invasion on June 6, 1944, at Gold Beach, followed by landings at Juno, Utah and Omaha Beaches. Marvin received an Honorable Discharge in February, 1946. He married his high school sweetheart Delores Birch on Aug. 22, 1945.
His varied job and business experiences in Livingston included a partnership in Olson Motor Co.; building and operating the Del Mar Motel from 1952 until selling it in 1977; a partnership in the Guest House Hotel; and purchasing the Tastee Freeze in 1978 and operating it until selling it in 1981. For eight years, they enjoyed winters in Arizona while spending summers in Billings. Golf was a big part of Marvin’s life, with honors that include winning first place at Lake Hills Seniors, winning first place, class 3 in the Montana State Senior Golf Tournament and hitting five holes in one. Marvin was a lifetime member of the American Legion and Livingston Elks Lodge. Due to his service at Normandy, he received the French Medal of Honor on July 4, 2016.
He was preceded in death by his mother, father and infant daughter, Geraldine Diane Olson.
His family was an important part of his life. Surviving members are his wife, Delores, of 74 years, children Tom (Jean) Olson of Laurel, Debbie (John) Tuomi of Palmer, Alaska; five grandchildren, Jenny, Eric, Bryan, Justin and Jessica; and 12 great-grandchildren.
Services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, Dec. 13, at Franzen-Davis Funeral Home. Burial will be at Mountain View Cemetery with military honors.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St Jude Children’s Research Hospital or the Shriners Children Hospital.