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Edwards Funeral Home - Chinook, Montana


Thomas Michael Durand

Thomas Michael Durand
Born: Aug 30, 1940
Died: Feb 23, 2016

Thomas M. Durand (“Ake’chita Was’te”, “Good Soldier”) died of natural causes on February 23, 2016 in Benefis Hospital in Great Falls. Cremation has taken place under the direction of Edwards Funeral Home of Chinook, MT. A memorial service will be held May 7, 2016 at 1:00 pm at the United Methodist Church in Harlem. Burial will be in the Harlem Cemetery. 
            Thomas passed away surrounded by his family after a courageous battle with diabetes and congestive heart failure. He was born on August 30, 1940 to Florence and August Durand in Wolf Point, Montana. He was raised and educated in Harlem, Montana, graduating in 1959 from Harlem High School. After high school he attended Great Falls Community College, taking business courses. He was drafted into the Army on December 15, 1961. Thomas served as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne and was stationed in Germany and Cambodia. He was Honorably Discharged on March 27, 1965. After his discharge from the army, he worked at the Great Northern Railway. In 1967. He became the bookkeeper/accountant for a company in Louisville, Kentucky. Then in 1968-1969 he became the bookkeeper/accountant for a company in Jeffersonville, Indiana. He started working for the Southern Railway as an agent/operator until 1972. In 1973-1974, he worked for International Harvester as a core setter in Louisville, Kentucky. After that, he worked in construction until he was hired as a brakeman/conductor on the Burlington Northern Railway in 1976. He retired in 1998 due to an injury, having worked nearly 40 years for the railroad.
            Thomas married the love of his life, Gladys Conner on November 5, 1978. Together they made their home in Havre and at Duck Lake, Mt. He enjoyed outdoor activities such as fishing and hunting. He particularly love to follow and support the Harlem Wildcats basketball teams. He was recognized as an “outstanding fan” by the Montana High School Association.
            He was preceded in death by his brother Wilbur Red Stone, his parents Florence and August Durand and sister, Charlene Leo. Thomas is survived by his wife of 37 years, Gladys Durand, his stepdaughters Susan (Jerry) Moriarty of Auburn Washington, and Kay (Dan) Rogers of Spanaway, Washington Also surviving him are grandchildren Christine, Jennifer, Jerry, Danny, Tiffany, David, Brittany and Rex. His sisters Delores Snow of Harlem and Norma Garcia of Nampa, Idaho as well as loving in laws, several nieces and nephews and many special friends survive Thomas. “Saba” his devoted dog companion also survives.

Public Guest Book

May 5th
Kathy Musson
Gladys and family: I am so sorry for your loss. I enjoyed reading the history of Tom's life in the obituary as I learned that was much more to Tom than I knew. I know you were his favorite nurse, Gladys and I am glad you two had many years to share.
May 6th
Adolf Neumann
Nellie and I'd like to let Gladys and the rest of the family know that we are praying for you. I remember with great fondness the time we spent on and off ;the football field During our time in the Harlem Class of 1959 -- and all of the other times we shared since then. During the last few years, I particularly liked Tom's practicing his German on me. If you ever need to get away and relax, come visit us in the Washington D.C. area. Aloha!
May 9th
Russell B. Crites
Gladys, So sorry to hear of Tom passing. He was always a good friend and we had many laughs together. He loved Basketball so much. We had that in common and many other things. He was a Good man and I will miss him. Sincerely, Russell B. Crites
May 10th
Nancy Pegar
I am so sad my friend, Tom, is gone. He brought joy to my life any time I would see him. I will miss him!!

I send you prayers of peace and love to surround you. Hopefully, your memories will sustain you.



Edwards Funeral Home  ♦  500 Indiana Street, Chinook, MT 59523   ♦  406-357-2529