Lyle Dean Dunham, 73, was peacefully relieved from his suffering on Feb. 23. Lyle’s courageous battle with CBGD was eased by his loving wife Cindy, his endearing caregiver, and wonderful family and friends who endured by his side with endless compassion and strength. He had his pride and dignity to the end and his wonderful humor sustained us all. Lyle was born Feb. 16, 1946 in Wheatland to John Robert Dunham and Louise Dunham. Lyle had three beautiful daughters, Candace Ann (Jason) Wright, Stacy (Doug) Gates and Kirsten (Dan) Neumann. He thought the world of his eight grandchildren, Emily Wright, Madison Wright, Lindsey Dunham (deceased), Delaney Gates, Finley Gates, Carter Neumann, Sawyer Neumann and Asher Neumann.
Lyle married Kathy McGuire in 1965 and soon after joined the Wyoming National Guard. Lyle, always the entrepreneur, from his lawn mowing business at a very young age in Wheatland, to becoming the youngest manager of the Midwest Gibson Discount store chain, living in Scottsbluff, Neb. In 1976, Lyle moved his family to Billings, Mont. and started Dunham Distributing and became a successful beer and wine wholesaler. He was President of the Montana Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association, Vice-President of the Rocky Mountain Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association and was on the Board of Directors of the National Beer & Wine Wholesalers Association. In 1987 Lyle met and married his wife of 30 years, Cindy Harris, who lived in Scottsdale, Ariz. Never to let dust settle, Lyle got into the communications business in Arizona and was owner of a cable television company and fledgling phone card business. He was also active in the Arizona Cable Television Association as a Board Member. Lyle enjoyed such civic groups as the Scottsdale Sunrise Rotary and became a board member of the Scottsdale Boys and Girls Club. A lot of Lyle’s dear friends that are by his side today derive from these early beginnings in Arizona and the comradery of these worthwhile organizations. Lyle and Cindy retired and while keeping a foothold in beautiful Red Lodge, Mont., moved to Molokai, Hawaii. Lyle missed the hustle bustle of the business world and became a successful real estate broker and business consultant, both in the islands as well as back in Montana and Wyoming where he had Dunham Real Estate Services and Stratus Consulting. Lyle became the President of the West Molokai Homeowners Association and President of the Papohaku Homeowners Association.
Lyle’s passion was fly fishing, hunting all over the world, hiking, camping and riding his horses with his wife Cindy outside their home in the beautiful Beartooth Mountains of Montana and always had a great Labrador Retriever trotting by his side. He loved his happy, full and adventurous life, and always said “Life is Good”, even when he was struggling at the end of his days. His strength and great attitude are an inspiration and amazed us all.
Lyle always liked a party . . . The Montana “Celebration of Life” will be this summer in Red Lodge, TBD. The Arizona “Celebration” will be March 23 at the Hawkins Hangar from 2 - 6 p.m., in Scottsdale. Many thanks to the doctors, therapist and staff at Beartooth Billings Clinic and The Wellness Center. He loved his therapies, they kept him going. He asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Beartooth Billings Clinic Foundation or the Red Lodge Boys and Girls Club, such a worthy organization for our community and near and dear to Lyle’s heart.
As Lyle toasted the sunset every evening no matter where he was he’d say . . . “Good Bye Mr. Sun.”