Homer J. Julian, 88

Published 6:09pm Monday, June 3, 2013

Homer Joseph Julian, 88

Born: June 10, 1924

Died: May 26, 2013

We rejoiced when loving Husband, Dad and Grandpa, Homer Joseph Julian, joined his Heavenly Father on May 26, 2013, after a long illness.

Homer was born June 10, 1924, in Dowagiac. He was the oldest of five children and grew up farming with his family. He met Jean Miller at Dowagiac First Methodist Church, where they married on June 1, 1952. In 10 years, they were the proud parents of five girls and a boy. Homer was a highly skilled tool and die machinist, working at a number of machine shops in Michigan and Indiana.

In 1963, Homer and Jean took a second honeymoon out west. While in Bozeman, Montana, they knew in their hearts this was the place they would raise their family. They packed up all their possessions and six kids and moved to Bozeman in 1964.

Homer worked at Montana State University as an engineering designer and fabricator of unique research instruments and other equipment. He also spent several years running his own business — The Monki-Wrench — a car repair shop.

Later in his career, he went back to his original machinist skills at King Tool in Bozeman.

Homer’s life revolved around his family and Christian faith. “Praise the Lord!” was Homer’s opening statement to many a conversation. He made friends everywhere he went through his earnestness, sincerity and enthusiastic introduction of “Hi! My name’s Homer!”

He cherished his years on the board of directors for the Montana Christian Ashram at the Camp on the Boulder. He carried his camera everywhere. He was famous for taking pictures of everything around him. He was an avid reader about everything scientific — quantum mechanics, geology, ornithology (remember the 5 a.m. bird walks!), astronomy and a particular passion, wind power. Most of all, he loved taking pictures of his family. No holiday party or family outing was complete without lining up for pictures! And, during the last years of his life, he spent many hours making heavy-duty sawhorses for Habitat for Humanity.

We all smile at some small, defining memories: Memorial Day weekends at Luccock Park helping Dad fell trees for firewood, making sure that we all, in turn, had a (somewhat) reliable vehicle for work; the Christmas “Banjo Treasure Hunt” that made Homer cry since he didn’t have any money to buy us presents; the funny, Depression-era compulsion to completely scrape his dinner plate clean; and his beaming happiness to see you, complete with a bone-jarring, bear-hug greeting.

Homer was preceded in death by his brother, Sam Julian, and adopted daughter, Janis Hoffman.

Homer leaves: his wife of 60 years, Jean; children, Jeanne (Robert) Schulz, Alice (Paul) Janke, Teresa (Tony) Kolnik, Mary (Robert) Atkins, Mark (Sherie) Julian and Shirley (Eric) Herman; brothers, Dr. Mark (Maggie) Julian and Fred (Phyllis) Julian; and sister, Ruby Rowell.

Also, his beloved adopted children, Frank and Carmella Marble, Deena Westfall and Candy Allen.

His numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren will miss Grandpa tremendously.

 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” John 14:1-4.

His humble and pure faith in Jesus touched all those who knew him. Homer loved us and prayed for each of us by name every day. We send him home with joy.

Memorial Services will be June 30 at 2 p.m. at King Tool, 5350 Love Lane, Bozeman, MT 59718.

Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service (www.dokkennelson.com).

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