Sept. 10, 1935 – June 3, 2011
Elmer Merland Bisby died at the North Big Horn Hospital in Lovell on June 3, 2011, surrounded by family and friends. Elmer was born on Sept. 10, 1935, at the home of his grandparents in Wheatland, Pa., to Elmer Bisby Sr. and Ruth Scott Bisby.
When Elmer was young, his family moved to Southern California where he was raised in a large family that he loved very much. His parents had 11 children, including Wes, Elmer, Jerry, Ruth, Chris, Marie, Patty, Tim, Paul, Dan and Jim.
After graduation from high school, Elmer enlisted in the Air Force in August of 1956 where he trained as an electronics technician. Shortly after, he married Leona Hagel on Sept. 15, 1956. He was stationed at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas, where he and Leona made their home until he left the service in August of 1962. Upon leaving the Air Force, Elmer went to work for Litton Industries in Simi, Calif., where he worked as an electronics technician.
In 1970, Elmer and Leona moved to Cowley with their six children. Elmer and his family quickly fell in love with Wyoming and the friendliness of the people. He enjoyed being outdoors, especially when hunting and fishing season came around. He was an avid hunter, and he particularly loved bird hunting. He had a number of bird dogs that he loved very much, and they became close members of the family. His golden retriever, Sam, will miss him. Elmer also spent many summer days fishing at Big Horn Lake where he enjoyed time with his family and friends.
Elmer worked in various jobs while in Wyoming. After initially moving to Cowley, Elmer worked for the Cowley School District for two years as a custodian and bus driver. He later worked in the construction and bentonite industries. During this time he worked for Welch Construction, American Colloid, Baroid, Nicholls and Lewis, and Great Western Sugar.
In 1986 Elmer and Leona returned to California where they managed properties in Mojave and Burbank. In 2000 Elmer and Leona moved back to Wyoming where they were able to retire and enjoy their passion of the outdoors with family and friends.
In 2002 his beloved wife, Leona, died. Shortly after, Elmer began volunteering at the North Big Horn Senior Center delivering meals to area seniors. Elmer enjoyed this time as he quickly became friends with those he visited. He became more than friends with Candy Clark, whom he met on his meal route. On Dec. 8, 2008, Elmer married Candy, a long-time resident of Byron. Elmer and Candy were humbled, yet honored, to be selected Senior Rose King and Queen for the 2008 Mustang Days celebration. They resided in Lovell where Candy continues to live.
Elmer belonged to a variety of organizations, including the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Freemasons, High Mountain Archers and Verdugo Hills Archers. He was baptized into the Catholic Church and was a member of Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church in Lovell. Elmer continued his volunteer work with the senior center until 2010 when failing vision prohibited him to drive. It saddened him to give up this service that he loved so much.
Elmer was preceded in death by his father and mother, Elmer Bisby Sr. and Ruth Scott Bisby; brother Chris Bisby; sisters Jerry Covell and Patty Dickenson; his first wife, Leona Hagel Bisby; and granddaughter Geni Hunder.
Elmer is survived by his wife, Candy; brothers Wes Bisby, Tim Bisby, Paul Bisby, Dan Bisby and Jim Bisby; sisters Ruth Ochoa and Marie Walker; children Donna (Jim) Blick, Don (Carla) Bisby, Cindy (Jay) Hunder, Karen (Jeffery) Wardell, Laura (Ernest) Workman and Sandy Tippetts; 24 grandchildren and 33 great-grandchildren.
A rosary vigil will be held at Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church on Friday, June 10, 2011, at 7 p.m., and a Funeral Mass will be held Saturday, June 11, at 1 p.m. at Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church. Interment will be at the Lovell Cemetery. Family and friends are invited to gather at the home of Jeff and Karen Wardell following the service.