Lawrence H. Chapel

April 24, 1927-July 30, 2018
Thursday, August 9, 2018
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Lawrence H. “Chape” Chapel, 91, long time resident of Livingston, entered eternity to be with the Lord, Monday, July 30, at his home with his wife, Virginia, at his side. A memorial funeral service will be held 2 p.m., Friday, August 10, at the Livingston Christian Center with Pastor Duane Huie officiating.

A reception will follow the service at the church.

Larry was born April 24, 1927 in Big Timber. He was the ninth child born to ranchers Clyde and Enger (Sterry) Chapel. He attended Big Coulee country school, Sweet Grass County High School and quit school during World War II to work his family’s ranch. At age 12 he began breaking and training horses. Working with horses was one of his lifelong greatest interests. His first job in Park County was as a ranch hand at the Mission Ranch. Through the years he worked on several ranches in Park and Sweet Grass counties, including the Harms Ranch, Meyers Ranch, Miller Ranch and later the Cremer Ranch.

On May 20, 1961, Larry was united in marriage to Virginia Marlys Bluhm in Mankato, Minnesota. They lived on acreage outside of Livingston until they moved to Willow Creek Road. Their marriage was blessed with two children, Larry and Vicki. They shared 57 years of marriage.

Chape competed in rodeos around the state, participating in saddle bronc riding, calf roping, steer wrestling, team roping and wild horse races. At the Livingston Roundup in 1947 he won the All-Around Cowboy title. He worked with his brothers, Ken and Pat, shearing sheep and logging, along with having a horse shoeing business. With his enthusiasm for hunting he ran Elkhorn Guide and Outfitting service. He also worked as a machinist at the Burlington Northern Rail Road for 26 years. When the BNRR left Livingston he went to work at the Cremer Ranch calving in the spring at their cow camp near Melville, close to where he grew up.

He was a Park County brand inspector from 1984 until his death and a member of the Livingston Christian Center since 1966. Through the years Larry enjoyed riding with family and friends in the Livingston Roundup Parade and was honored to be Grand Marshall of the parade in 2015. That same year an article in Range magazine featured some of the events of his life.

Larry enjoyed telling stories, especially about horses. He participated in cowboy polo, the O-Mok-See at the Park County Fair and team roping with friends and family. During the summer months he liked riding into mountain lakes and creek fishing in local streams and picnics. In the fall he enjoyed hunting antelope, deer and especially elk. Playing cards, pinochle tournaments and having coffee at the truck stop were also some of his favorite pastimes. Spending time with his family, grandchildren and friends was one of his greatest joys. Larry will be greatly missed by his loved ones.

Chape is survived by his wife, Virginia; son, Larry (Shelly) Chapel of Livingston; daughter, Vicki (Mark) Henry of Manhattan; four grandchildren, Jessie and Nick Chapel, Nolan and Mariah McGuiness; and sister, Avis Funk of Livingston.

Larry was married in his younger days and to that marriage two daughters were born, Linda (Chapel) McBride of Townsend (Linda is deceased) and Joyce (Chapel) Randles of Billings. Linda’s children are Eric Saltzman, Kevin McBride and Kim (McBride) Cook.

He was preceded in death by his parents and siblings, Donna, Gene, Ken, Clyde, Bob, Pat, Mary and Florence.

Memorials may be made to the Livingston Christian Center, 1400 Mount Baldy Dr., Livingston, MT 59047.

Arrangements are under the care of Franzen-Davis Funeral Home. Online condolences may be shared at