The Billings Gazette from Billings, Montana on October 10, 1987 · 22
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The Billings Gazette from Billings, Montana · 22

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Billings, Montana
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Saturday, October 10, 1987
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22
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Firm o&timistic eoboufl oil business -C Saturday. Oct. 10, 1987 The Billings Gazette no Llirp,-J ivr J I V' . t & 1$ 1 - A- p: BUTCH CRAWFORD King KATHI LARSON Queen Senior High royalty: Kathi Larson and Butch Crawford were crowned homecoming king and queen at Senior High School Friday night. The students were crowned at the B-Day dance in the school gymnasium after Senior High's football game with Great Falls High. Larson's parents are Mr. and Mrs. James Larson, 664 Tabriz Drive. Crawford is the son of Raymond Crawford, 943 Westgate Drive. Other candidates for the royalty are Paige Boyer, Kristy Maggert, Bev Shore, Lesley Zier, Mark Beaton, Rocky ConnelL Greg McCunn, and Doug McGraiL Historical Society: Bmseward, proprietor of Ingomar's Jersey Lily Bar and Cafe, will speak at the October dinner and meeting of the Yellowstone Historical Society. Born in Ingomar in 1919, Seward was a professional boxer in Chicago, where he worked under fight manager Jack Hurley. After a stint in the Navy from 1941 to 1945, Seward returned to Ingomarl where he developed the Jersey Lily. The cafe's beans are touted as "the best in the West" Known for his wit and story-telling, Seward will talk about his life and V SEWARD to speak experiences. The dinner meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. Oct 16 at the Elks Club. People who are not members of the Historical Society may make reservations through Wednesday by calling 245-0193 or 245-6684. Annual sessions studied: a public forum will explore benefits and drawbacks of annual legislative sessions on Oct 17. In 1988, Montana voters will cast ballots on a proposed constitutional amendment that would require the legislature to have annual sessions, "with limitations on legislative days and business to be conducted." If approved, the amendment would go into effect Jan. L 1991. Common Cause, the national non-partisan citizens' lobby group, will sponsor the forum. State Budget Director Dave Hunter and Rep. Jack Sands, R-Billings, will be among the panelists. Vic Miller will moderate. After the panel discussion, audience members will be allowed to ask questions, said Sam Rankin, state director for Common Cause. The free forum is scheduled 4-5:15 p.m. in the Lewis and Clark Room at Eastern Montana College. For details, call Rankin, 248-7304. Fromberg field dedication: Fromberg will dedicate its new athletic field Saturday with a parade and ceremony at 10:30 a.m. A football game will follow at 1 : 30 p.m. When the $55,000 initial estimate for the field proved too costly for Fromberg High School, the local Booster Cloub took on the project Greg StovalL club spokesman, said the field was built with the time, knowledge and labor of townspeople at a cost of $9,000. "This illustrates the value of community support of a small town for a necessary project without waiting for the government to pay," Stovall said. By PAUL HOLLEY Of The Gazette Staff The oil business is looking up and a new Billings company plans to take advantage of it. Warburton Valve Co. of Coffeyville, Kans., opened a branch operation this week at 6554 South Frontage Road. The company, which refurbishes and sells valves used in pipelines and refineries, has seven employees and may add four to six workers early next year, said Billings general manager Larry Adams. Warburton, founded in 1956, had handled valve work in a 10-state area including Wyoming. Adams said that company owners chose Billings as a location to serve Wyoming's five refineries and to gain new business from Montana and North Dakota. "The stablizing oil prices is a good sign," he said. "I think in '88, you'll see major turnarounds (maintenance work) at some of the refineries and that will be good for us." i Warburton's owners purchased the former General Electric building on Sept. 18 and immediately started to bring in specialized valve rebuilding equipment. Adams said the $350,000 investment enables workers to refurbish valves ranging in size from 2 to 24 inches. Adams, who has more than 10 years of experience in the valve industry was formerly with Fred McCoy & Co., a valve firm in Lockwood. He said several of the Warburton employees also came from the McCoy company. Much of Warburton's winter work will involve rebuilding valves from a 480,000-barrel-per-day Amoco refinery in Illinois, Adams said. Work is expected to shift to the region's pipelines and refineries next spring. v7 tf ., . ...... ; : f If' , krv .. - r'k - L. t ' t . i. .Jf , 1 f W a - 7 w i 1 1 Gazette photo by Larry Mayer David Feller operates a lathe at Warburton Valve Co. at 6554 S. Frontage Road. irobel selection splits MSU faculty BOZEMAN (AP) A "residue of acrimony" lingers over Montana State University following the actions this summer of Professor Gary StrobeL but the hard feelings should not disqualify him from serving on the University Research Committee, MSU's top research administrator told the Faculty Council. At issue is Strobel's appointment by John Jutila, MSU vice president and director of research, to the 13-member committee, which distributes research money to campus departments. Strobel ran afoul of university and federal regulations this summer by releasing a genetically altered micro-organism without approval from either MSU or the Environmental Protection Agency. Bob Brown, Faculty Council chairman and a civil engineering professor, said Thursday there could be "some concern that he (Strobel) could influence the committee in a less than objective way." There is no conflict of interest with Strobel serving on the committee, Jutila said. Other than being one of 13 members of a group that distributes money: "Dr. Strobel's decisions (to) influence research in any other way would simply not occur," he said. Jutila also implored about 30 faculty members who turned out for Thursday's meeting to show some compassion for a dedicated colleague. Strobel has spent years working to improve MSU and higher education in Montana, Jutila said, citing Strobel's directorship of the state MONTS program, which provides grant money for Montana researchers. Strobel's experience in dealing with funding agencies and his extensive research background makes him a valued member of the University Research Committee, Jutila said. But he said he is willing to listen to people who think otherwise and would be willing to reconsider Strobel's appointment. In the meantime, Jutila said he is backing StrobeL StrobeL who did not attend the meeting, said Friday he would abide by whatever the administration, or whoever makes the decision, wishes to do on the matter. "What are your obligations to this man?" Jutila asked. "Somehow, in our run-and-gun style to get the job done, the business of dealing humanely has fallen away." Gary Evans, a professor of physical education, said "Ph.D.s are like a bunch of chickens" who are pecking at a wounded colleague. Trying to oust Strobel from the committee will only "slow the healing process," Jutila said. Jutila maintained that Strobel has suffered enough for his actions, which drew a reprimand from MSU President William Tietz and a mild warning from the EPA. Strobel on his own decided to end his experiment using an altered organism to fight Dutch elm disease, and cut down his own trees. A full university hearing was conducted, the facts were gathered and judgment was rendered, he said. But "the severity of the punishment has been questioned" by some faculty members, Jutila said. "I've been disturbed by a relatively ungenerous group on campus," he said. "It has been one of the most emotional and destructive things that I've been involved with in my 26 years at this institution." The debate about Strobel's actions and whether he was adequately punished "has pulled faculty apart and polarized some faculty groups," he said. Strobel does arouse strong feelings in his colleagues, Jutila said. Council rejects petitions to oust Real Bird By ROGER CLAWSON 01 The Gazette Staff Four petitions to impeach or demote Crow Tribal Chairman Richard Real Bird were rejected by the tribal council's Executive Committee. One petition called for the impeachment of Real Bird at Saturday's quarterly Tribal Council Meeting. Another demanded the demotion of the chairman to vice chairman. A third petition would have reduced Real Bird to half pay and put the vice chairman in charge of tribal operations. The fourth petition sought to reduce the chairman's pay to 14 its present level while allowing him to keep his title, but stripping him of most of his powers. Administration spokesman De-witt Dillon said the four petitions had a total of 98 signatures. 100 signatures are needed to place an item on the agenda by petiton. "One had 16 signatures. Another had 38," Dillon said. "None was close to the required 100, so the Executive Committee pushed them off the agenda." Satuday's 2 p.m. Council Meeting will have a 15-item agenda that includes: The administration's proposed budget for fiscal 1988. A resolution reaffirming the Crow Tribal Court (as the lower court recognized by the Crows in preference to the court administered by Bureau of Indian Affairs after the BIA withdrew funding from the tribal court). A proposal to provide a evening activities bus for children in Crow attending school in Lodge Grass. A resolution calling for assistance to Plenty Coups High School in Pryor. A resolution proposing the use of $774,000 from funds on deposit with the U.S. Treasurery to retire debts. Announcement by Walfermire expected Tuesday HELENA (AP) - The Montana Republican Party likely will get its third candidate for governor Tuesday when Secretary of State Jim Waltermire is expected to enter the race. The announcement will come as no surprise. Waltermire has been raising money and laying the political groundwork for a gubernatorial bid since he was reelected to his current job in 1984. He will join Stan Stephens, a former state senator from Havre, and Rep. Cal Winslow of Billings in the GOP primary race. Stephens has been campaigning since January, and Winslow began in July. Waltermire, 38, has had a controversial history since taking office in 1980, frequently getting involved in politically sensitive matters. Ten months after becoming secretary of state, Waltermire was embroiled in dispute over his plans to create an ethics commission to handle alleged violations of the state Code of Ethics by public officials. Democrats complained that he was trying to shirk his responsibility to rule on possible violations by fellow Republicans, and contended that state law did not allow for creation of such a panel The commission was formed in late 1981, but lasted only six months until a district judge ruled the Code of Ethics was unconstitutional and the secretary of state had no enforcement power. Problems surfaced again in 1985 when Waltermire admitted using official trips at state expense to arrange financing and support for his future political plans. Two weeks later, he agreed to reimburse the state $900 for the cost of the visits to 18 communities. Only a week after that Waltermire took criticism for a memo written by two staff members that evaluated the political leanings of county clerks and recorders, describing some with such terms as "airhead" and "slightly dumb." Waltermire denied any knowledge of the memo and called it inappropriate. In August 1986, Waltermire was sued for wrongful discharge by a former employee, J. Michael Graves, who worked in the office for less than two months. The case was dismissed in July of this year when Graves failed to participate in court proceedings. Waltermire's hiring practices came under scrutiny in August 1986 when news reports showed he had hired two political advisers. Graves claimed in the articles that Charles Brooke, Waltermire's executive assistant and Elwood English, chief legal counsel, routinely used state time to map political strategy for their boss. Waltermire denied that the men worked on political activities while on the state payrolL Later that month, news stories revealed a probe of Waltermire's state phone" records showed that more than half his calls had been made to former campaign consultants, advisers and contributors. Waltermire criticized the Missoulian newspaper for mounting a vendetta and "political witch hunt" through publication of the articles on his Wrings and phone calls. Waltermire was again in the limelight last fall when it was found that the official voter information pamphlet prepared by his office, contained a typographical error in the text of one ballot measure. The mistake was cited by the state Supreme Court this year in overturning passage of the initiative. Waltermire, who already has named former Bozeman Chamber of Commerce lobbyist Bob Correa as his campaign finance director, said in a June interview that he expects to spend $1 million on his gubernatorial effort Books never closed on Montana's unsolved murders "I've spent hours, days and weeks on that thing. I would dearly love to solve that case." ' Gary Fjelstad Treasure County sheriff HELENA. (AP) - On the last evening of his life, Morris Davis Jr. delivered a pizza to a house on the northwest side of Great Falls. His body was found 90 minutes later, riddled with bullets. Randall Church opened the rear door of the Bozeman restaurant where he worked, apparently thinking friends had stopped by to visit after business hours. No friends greeted him. But someone pumped two .22-caliber bullets into his head. Those deaths occurred more than two years ago and are among a handful of Montana murder cases that remain unsolved, gnawing at the memories of families and law officers. Leads have become dead ends, memories have faded, hope has waned and once-hot trails have long since cooled. Treasure County Sheriff Gary Fjelstad remembers the case of 69-year-old Franke Donnes. Found sitting in his car near his Hysham-area ranch borne, he had been shot once in the head during the early morning of Sept. 10, 1982. "I've spent hours, days and weeks on that thing," Fjelstad said. "I would dearly love to solve that case." But he has no clues, only speculation that Donnes had an argument over a business deal or came upon someone trespassing. For Richard Church, thoughts of his dead son and the unpunished killer are never far away. Almost every week, Church stops by the Havre cemetery where his son is buried. "It bothers me more than anyone thinks it does," he says. "It just makes me sick to think about it" He has little hope that authorities will ever find who murdered his 23-year-old son to steal $1,000 in cash. And he is bitter. "If they do find the guy, they won't do anything about it," Church says. "They'll throw him in prison and feed the sucker. And that ain't good enough in my book. "They should catch the guy and give him the same medicine he gave my son ... and I'd like to do it" Bozeman Police Sgt. Stan Tenney admits he has no leads in the case. "I'm still boggled by the whole thing." Some cases may never be solved, he said. "You have to keep that in the back of your mind." Initially, police had some suspects. Two New Mexico prison escapees had a stolen car with tires that nearly matched tread marks found near the Pizza Hut where Randall Church was shot. But authorities were unable to conclusively link the designs. Another man, nbw serving time in Wisconsin for murder, was in Bozeman at the time of the sfcooting and knew Church, an MSU student. Again, no connection to the killing could be found. Sgt. Dave Warrington of the Great Falls police department says he has no fresh trail in the Davis killing. A 23-year-old delivery man for Howard's Pizza, Davis was shot eight times with a pistol on the night of April 5, 1985. The money he carried was taken. The killer had ordered a pizza, using the address of a vacant house. Witnesses last saw Davis standing on the front porch of the home. "We're adding to the list (of leads) all the time, but there's nothing, nothing," Warrington said. "Part of it is the draw of the cards just luck." Delinita Davis, the victim's mother, said capture of the killer would give her long-awaited peace of mind. "There's always that fear that the person is still in the state," she said, admitting she often worries about the safety of her other son, Clifford, now 23. Mrs. Davis sees a mixed blessing in an arrest. On one hand, she wants justice served, but old and painful memories would be stirred. "It will be very hard to go through a trial," she said. "We will have to go through it all again." She said she believes the case will remain unsolved and is angry with police, saying they mishandled the investigation by allowing too many people into the vacant house the night of the murder and refusing to use a tracking dog. Mrs. Davis discounts rumors that her son is dead because of a lover's quarrel or illegal drug dealings, but is convinced that the brutal shooting was a simple robbery. Dawson County Sheriff James George expects to long remember the case of Dexter Stefonek, a 67-year-old man from Rhinelander, Wis., whose decomposed body was found at a garbage dump west of Glendive on March 8, 1986. The victim,, missing for five months, had been shot twice in the head and beaten. His car, gutted by fire, had been found at a nearby rest stop. George speculates that Stefonek was killed when he stopped to give someone a ride. A witness remembered a man whose van had run out of gas and who was looking for a ride at the rest area shortly before Stefonek disappeared. Unfortunately, the witness could not recall the out-of-state license ' plate number on the van and authorK ties have had no idea where to: search. "It's kind of like a puzzle you have to put the pieces together," George said. "We've got a couple of holes left to fill in. "It bothers me a lot," he added. "Someone's life has been taken and it could happen to someone else."

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