Alan John McCoy
Alan John McCoy, age 95, passed away peacefully at the home of his daughter Laurel and son-in-law Scott on Oct. 10, 2022.
He was the fourth child born to John Campbell and Ethel Pearl (Mountjoy) McCoy on Oct. 2, 1927, in Camas Prairie, Mont. In 1929, when Alan was 2, the family moved to his grandfather’s (Oscar McCoy) homestead three miles northeast of Lonepine, which had been established in 1914. In 1940 they moved to where the family ranch is today.
He went through all 12 grades at the Lonepine School and graduated in 1946. After graduation he was inducted into the U.S. Army, receiving basic training at Fort Lewis, Wash., becoming a sergeant. Following basic training, he was sent to Yokohama, Japan, near the end of World War II where he was assigned to work in a heavy equipment repair company. He received his discharge papers in 1948 and earned both the Victory Medal and the Army of Occupation Medal Japan.
Following his time in the army, Alan worked road construction and performed mechanic work in 1948-1952, including working on the Alcan Highway in Alaska. Later, he worked the family ranch and developed a love of horses, raising and training them during the summers throughout the 1950s. He then raised registered Hereford’s in the ’60s.
In 1954 he began his college career at Central Washington University, Ellensburg, and then that fall transferred to the University of Montana in Missoula. He received his BS degree in Math and Science in 1956 and his Masters in 1957. For three years he taught science at Missoula County High School and then science and math for six years at Plains High School. He finally returned to Hot Springs where he was the principal and taught math and science for two years before becoming the Hot Springs Schools’ superintendent.
After he chose to leave the education field, Alan joined a partnership with his good friend, Bill Christensen, and started Irrigation Equipment Sales, Inc. He retired from the business in 1997, and raised commercial stock cattle the remainder of his life.
In 1952, Alan met the love of his life in Hot Springs, and became engaged to Sophie Victoria Simla in the spring of 1953. They were married in Kelowna, B.C., Canada on Nov. 19, 1953, at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church. Alan and Sophie began their 60 years of married life in Ellensberg, Wash., before moving to Missoula. They proceeded to move to Plains for another six years before finally settling in Lonepine at the McCoy Ranch in 1966, where they raised their three children, Robert Campbell, Scot Alan and Laurel Ann.
Alan was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Sophie, parents John and Ethel McCoy, brother Robert, and sisters Phyllis Reynolds and Shirley Kontos. He is survived by his son, Robert (Anita) of Casper, Wyo.; son Scot, also of Casper; and daughter, Laurel (Scott) Ross of Belgrade. He will also be missed by grandchildren and honorary pallbearers Christopher (Nadine) Tedford, Ashley McCoy, Mackenzie McCoy, Chelsey Ross, Travis Ross, Logan McCoy and Joseph McCoy; great-grandchildren Tell and Romy Tedford and many beloved extended family members.
Alan will be fondly remembered for his devotion to family, his kindness, his service to others, and his strong work ethic. Alan was involved in the Western Montana Stockmen’s Association, the Lion’s Club and the local VFW as well as many local community events.
A Celebration of Life for Alan, will be Saturday, Nov. 5, 2022, at 1 p.m. at the Lonepine Community Hall in Lonepine. Graveside services and reception to follow.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the John C. McCoy Memorial Scholarship and/or the Lonepine Community Hall.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service, www.dokkennelson.com.