Ruben R. Day

October 3, 1933


December 3, 2020

Ruben R. Day

October 3, 1933


December 3, 2020

All are welcome to attend in person or by live stream

Ruben R. Day passed into eternal life on Dec. 3, 2020, due to Covid-19- related complications.

He was born at home on Oct. 3, 1933, in La Colonia, a Hispanic community on the south side of Billings. Born of immigrant parents from Mexico, Louis and Amada Day (Diaz y Pumarino), Ruben was the youngest of six children (Louie Day, Amada “Neetz” Strom, Delia Hofferber, Herman Day and Nancy Diaz). He was the last of his generation, as his siblings have all passed.

Ruben attended public schools until the sixth grade when he entered the Catholic school system at Kate Fratt School. In 1953, he graduated from Billings Central Catholic High School, where he excelled in football and basketball. He attended Eastern Montana College and then entered the Army and served in Korea for 16 months. Ruben then attended Carroll College in Helena and Wisconsin State in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, where he met the love of his life, Nancy Fisher. On June 7, 1958, they were married at St. Patrick’s Church in Eau Claire. After their marriage, they lived in Denver, Kalispell, and eventually settled in Billings, where Ruben continued a career in the insurance business. Focusing on sales, he joined Pioneer Petentler, which eventually became Hoiness LaBar Insurance. Ruben was an integral part in the growth of the company as it later became a national agency, PayneWest Insurance. Ruben specialized in insurance for banking and educational institutions. His insurance career spanned a remarkable 45 years!

Ruben’s business and community service were exemplary. He was chairman of the board of Western Security Bank for seven years, a Rotary member for 26 years (serving as a board member for two years), a board member for the Northern Rockies Cancer Center, along with a seven-year stint as a board member and Chairman (two years) of the Deaconess Development Foundation. As his children attended the Catholic Schools, Ruben and Nancy became active in Catholic education. In 1972, Ruben and a committee of six others founded the Billings Area Catholic Education Trust (BACET). He and Nancy were also integral in promoting increased involvement in the “Century Club,” which helped raise operating funds. The couple worked the Search Program for over 10 years, as the religious growth of students was a high priority. In 1992, he was the recipient of the National Catholic Educational Association Distinguished Graduate Award. He was also honored by his colleagues as he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from PayneWest in 2014.

While Ruben believed in and loved God above all else, on earth there was nothing more important to him than his wife, Nancy, and his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.The mantra of his life was Faith, Family and Friends. His friendships were too numerous to count. Ruben would endlessly go out of his way to connect with others, friends and strangers alike. Leaving an encounter with Ruben, one felt important, loved and respected. He had “smiling eyes,” as his natural demeanor was contagious and joyful.

The overwhelming number of condolences and sentiments given to his family is a remarkable testament to Ruben’s character and life. Ruben was loved by the multitudes! He will be missed by his family and all those who knew him.

Ruben was preceded in death by his parents and his six siblings. He is survived by: his wife of 62 years, Nancy; his children, Joni Day-Rains (Jim), Mike (Lisa), Cathy and Jim (Katie); grandchildren Casey, Jamie and Haley Rains; Maria (Jordan) Henke, Molly, Sarah, Johnny and Gracie Day; Samantha and Emily Day; two great-granddaughters, Hayden and Sawyer Henke; and his many nieces and nephews.

The Vigil service will be at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 17, at St. Thomas The Apostle Church. The funeral mass will be at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 18, also at St. Thomas.

Memorials would be welcomed in Ruben’s name to the organizations he supported: Billings Catholic Schools Foundation, LaVie Early Pregnancy Services or KJCR-Billings Catholic Radio.

The family would like to thank the staff, nurses and doctors who heroically cared for Ruben in his final days at St. Vincent Hospital, especially his granddaughter Molly who was there as an RN to help.

Vaya con Dios, Papa! Until we meet again! To be continued……..

All are welcome to attend in person or by live stream

Vigil Service and Funeral Mass LiveStream

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25 thoughts on “Ruben R. Day”

  1. Laurie Preitauer

    Dear Nancy and all of Ruben’s family,
    I am so very sorry that you have lost Ruben. I do know that Ruben is with his Lord and is just waiting for the time when you will all be reunited.
    I will always remember Ruben as a wonderful man with a beautiful soul. When describing Ruben to friends and colleagues, I always told them that Ruben was one of the kindest people that I have met in my life. He was blessed with a great sense of humor and I loved his smiling eyes!! Every year we, the girls, would look forward to our annual Highlands lunch with Ruben. Just being with Ruben was such a treat!
    I have such fond memories and when I think of Ruben, I just smile.
    God Bless Ruben and Your Family.
    Laurie Preitauer

  2. To the Day family,
    I send you thoughts and prayers. I worked With Reuben for 35 years from Hoiness LaBar to PayneWest Insurance. He was one of the kindest people I have ever known. Reuben I shared books and enjoyed discussing what we had read. I am grateful for having known Reuben. He will be missed.

  3. Words to express how you feel about someone seem sometimes not enough to relay how a person impacted your life. The Day family has been a part of my life since my senior year. I always felt special when Ruben would talk to me after games and his son is one of my longest friends who, like his father, is genuine and caring. Our families have shared precious moments that we will always cherish. God bless the entire Day family during this time of celebration of a life well lived and a man who fits my simple description of a “GOOD MAN”. Something hard to earn and not often spoken!! Something that your children carry on as they learned from a great mentor. God speed Ruben!

  4. Roxanne Farrington Tata

    Dear Day family,
    Ruben was a special man and his presence will live on through all of you . Know that he is at peace with the Lord and will be with you always.
    Jim and Katie & girls , we are so sorry for your lost.
    Love & Prayers Roxanne Farrington -Tata and family

  5. We are so sorry to hear of Rubens passing. A loss to your family, and a loss to the community. May God be with you all as you celebrate a life well lived and a wonderful family sure to carry on such a legacy of love.
    Cami and Dave Chandler

  6. I was privileged to have met him – such a good man. My heart is heavy for all of you in the Day family – prayers for peace and comfort. May God have mercy on Ruben and welcome him without delay.

  7. A grander gentleman I have not known. A kinder man I have not known. We all loved our Uncle Ruben…..our thoughts are with all of you

  8. Ruben and Family,
    To say he was a beautiful soul falls short of how I could describe him, Magnificient. He was a wonderful colleague for many years, he always was most concerned about how you truly were, with such deep meaning and true love. You are among the most high Ruben, rightfully so. Your hugs I will sorely miss.” You have done good, most faithful servant”
    Rest in Peace until we meet again.
    Rest in peace until we meet again.

  9. Nancy,
    We are so sorry for your family’s loss. We have fond memories of seeing you and Ruben at Mayfair, Fiesta and occasionally Mass and chatting about Eau Claire, etc. We are praying for all of you and wish Ruben Godspeed.
    Al (Jim) and Dee Martenson

  10. Ruben was a gentleman who loved his wife, children
    , and grandchildren. I watched him many years attend events for his kids and grandkids, he loved to go to their games, bragged about each Girl and Boy no matter their skills. I enjoyed being around him, he shared many thoughts about his family and those he shared with others. A great Dad, Grandpa, and friend. Our prayers and love in your time of need.

  11. Hi All. I have memories of your family from my time in Billings I saw Mr. Day and visited with him at one of Coleman’s softball games one summer when I was back in town. We had a really nice time together that day. It had been a long time and I asked about all of you. He was so proud to share the news of you all! I am SO sorry for your loss. My heart goes to you. My prayers are with you all during this difficult time.

  12. Dear Day Family, We were so sorry to hear of your loss. I have to repeat what others have said as I remember that wonderful smile and smiling eyes. Ruben made you feel SO WELCOME. A wonderful family man who raised great children. Love and Prayers to you all, Jan Osborne Grotz

  13. I am so sorry to hear about Ruben. I worked for Ruben at Hoiness LaBar and he was great to work for.
    Your family is in my thoughts and prayers. Mary Marshall

  14. Dear Family of Ruben, I can’t think of a man I ever respected and liked in the insurance world as much as I did Ruben. It was a privilege to know him. He was the consummate role model for new and experienced colleagues alike. It was no secret that he held his family near and dear to him, even though he gave his work life his all as well. So sorry for the tremendous loss you must feel.

  15. Reuben was one of the most “gentlemanly” men of everyone I have ever met. We so looked forward to his and Nancy’s visits to CJ’s. What great people! I/we will miss them immensely. Tom Pelatt/CJ’s

  16. I can’t imagine the loss you are all feeling. I so enjoyed seeing Ruben when you all attended mass at the hospital. Ruben was such a wonderful boss and caring about everyone and their families. May your memories sustain you.
    Linda Lange

  17. The words of Reuben’s obituary couldn’t be more true..”Ruben would endlessly go out of his way to connect with others, friends and strangers alike. Leaving an encounter with Ruben, one felt important, loved and respected. He had “smiling eyes,” as his natural demeanor was contagious and joyful.”
    His eyes surely did smile and he always went out of his way to say hello and offer a compliment and a handshake or hug. He was a true gentleman and a special man. I will miss seeing him around Billings. My condolences to the family.

    Shawnee Krauszer

  18. Our sincere condolences to the Day family. Beautiful funeral mass. We are with you in spirit. We are celebrating a life well lived. Ruben will be missed. May he Rest In Peace. ~ Pat, Mary Kay, and Karen Byorth

  19. Thank you letting us join you for the funeral mass. Words are never easy at a time like this, but may it comfort you that so very many people knew and loved Ruben. I will always remember his smile. Nancy , Joni and the Day family my heart is sad for you and may all the love that surrounds you comforts you. Thinking of you, Love Ken & Judy Burt

  20. Nancy and the Day family.
    What a wonderful service! Thank you for the option of the live streaming although I wish we could have attended in person.
    We are deeply sorry about your loss. I thought I should mention that Ruben has always had a special influence in my life since childhood. He was a great father figure and husband. Growing up, all of us kids would marvel at his stoic presence. We watched him exemplify loving God and family above all else, living with grace, professionalism and class. He showed all of us who were observing, a good work ethic and that we should give back to the community. He helped many of us young guys without ever knowing it just by being a great example. He helped raise great kids and instilled in them a deep love for family, friends and Christ…and a great sense of humor! He really did teach us to “lead by example”!
    I personally thank him for getting me started in my first banking job which has provided a good livelihood for me and my family.
    He was truly a great man and we, along with the community, will deeply miss him!

  21. Caroline Studer Thelen

    Ruben Day was a dear life long friend of my fathers. Never did he or Nancy not greet me with a warm and comforting hug. So much Healing Peace to all of you.

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