Cover photo for Eugene Taber, Jr.'s Obituary
Eugene Taber, Jr. Profile Photo
1939 Eugene 2023

Eugene Taber, Jr.

June 13, 1939 — October 26, 2023

It is with overwhelming sadness that Eugene Taber, Jr. of Shawmut, Montana passed away unexpectedly on October 26, 2023. He was 84 years old. Eugene Taber, Jr. was born on June 13, 1939, to Eugene and Virginia (Agard) Taber. He was the oldest of three children, followed by brother, Fred, and sister, Carolyn. Eugene was raised on the ranch his grandfather, William Taber, homesteaded on Fish Creek south of Shawmut, Montana, in 1911. Eugene continued to help his dad on the ranch while attending high school and graduated from Ryegate High School in 1958. He spent two years in the 82nd Airborne Division after being drafted into the United States Army in 1961. Eugene then returned to what he loved most...ranching. He enjoyed riding saddle bronc in local weekend rodeos. He also broke several colts for ranch work.

On June 17, 1967, he married Linda Ott. Eugene and Linda worked some of their own cattle while continuing to work side by side with Eugene, Sr. In 1977, they decided to branch out on their own. Eugene and Linda bought the land they were living on just south of Shawmut, Montana from Eugene's parents. There they raised five children, Johnny, Jimmy, Desiree, Melinda, and April. Eugene was quite proud to have thirteen grandchildren and one (soon-to-be two) great-grandchildren. He enjoyed sharing the joys of ranching with his family.

In addition to the ranch's cow/calf operation, Eugene maintained a feedlot for backgrounding feeder cattle and developing replacement heifers for himself and neighboring ranchers for many years. He carried on with the feedlot chores for Taber cattle up until his passing. Eugene loved his draft horses. His team pulled the hay wagon offering rides for the Shawmut community on occasion. Or you might have seen the horses pulling the chuckwagon in the Harlowton parade. There was a time when Eugene and Linda trailed cattle with the draft horse team pulling the chuckwagon to a leased ranch thirty miles away. And yes, Eugene enjoyed working cows on horseback every chance he had.

Eugene was involved with the Wheatland County Stockgrowers, Montana Farm Bureau, and a member of the Shawmut School board for many years. He was the current President of the Upper Musselshell Water User's Association.

If you would have asked Eugene when he was going to retire, he'd tell you "It's not work if you love what you do." And he never stopped working.

Eugene was preceded in death by his parents and granddaughter, Dusty Taber. He is survived by his wife, Linda, of 56 years; his children: Johnny (Joan) of Shawmut, Jimmy (Jen) of Shawmut, Desiree (John) of Dillon, Melinda (Chris) of Laurel, and April (Jeremiah) of Havre; grandchildren: Kendra, Cole, Keelan (Demi), Dalton (Maria), Tinsley, Joseph, Eliana, Mateah, Tyler, Blake, Madelyn, and Alivia; and great-grandson, Farrin.

A Celebration of Eugene's Life will be held at the Shawmut Community Center on Friday, November 3, 2023 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm. Private family burial will follow. Eugene will be laid to rest on the Taber Ranch.

Memorial contributions can be made in Eugene's name to Forever 42 Scholarship, P.O. Box 106, Shawmut, MT 59078 or can be dropped off at Citizen Bank & Trust in Harlowton or given to Jimmy Taber.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Eugene Taber, Jr., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Friday, November 3, 2023

10:00am - 12:00 pm (Mountain time)

Shawmut Community Center

Main Street, Shawmut, MT 59078

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