Obituary: Thomas Aaron Selstad, Jr.

March 8, 1927 - June 16, 2024
Thomas Aaron Selstad, Jr.
March 8, 1927 - June 16, 2024
Posted at 9:57 AM, Jul 02, 2024

Thomas Aaron Selstad, Jr. passed away on Sunday, June 16, 2024, at his home in Great Falls, MT at the age of 97. Tom was born in Great Falls, MT on March 8, 1927, to Thomas Selstad Sr. and Asne, “Esther” (Amot) Selstad. Tom grew up on the family farm in the Dutton area. Tom attended Great Falls High School, graduating in 1945.

Upon graduation Tom entered boot camp, and along with many of his classmates, was prepared for the invasion of Japan. Fortunately, the war ended before the invasion was implemented. After the war, Tom attended and graduated from the University of Montana. He then attended the University of Washington for post graduate work.

While attending college in Missoula, Tom met and began dating Elnore Smith. They married June 1, 1950. Upon finishing his post graduate work in Washington, Tom took a job in Libby, MT teaching high school science and math classes and coaching football and basketball. He later took a job teaching and coaching in Fairfield, MT and led the Fairfield Eagles basketball team to their first ever Class B State Championship. Tom was active in athletics throughout his entire life.

In 1954, Tom started Selstad Soil Service, a business specializing in the new field of Agriculture Chemicals. In 1968, Tom started Selstad’s Sod Farm, the first sod farm in Montana. In 1984, he started Selstad’s LawnRanger Spray Service, which provides residential and commercial lawn care. Tom also invested in real estate and had numerous rental properties through the years. Tom and Elnore raised three sons, Scott, Spencer, and Sherman. Tom enjoyed following and supporting them in their endeavors growing up.

He was elected and served terms in the Montana State Legislature as well as elected and served 1 term in the Montana State Senate. In 1968, Tom was the Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor, and in 1972, he was a primary candidate for the Republican candidate for Governor. Tom met Joyce Thomas, and she became a very special companion for many years.

He is survived by his three sons, Scott (Janice) Selstad, Spencer (Pamm) Selstad, and Sherman (Rhonda) Selstad; grandchildren, Samantha Lohner, Cam Dean, Amanda Selstad, Shelby Arruda, Adam Selstad, Miche Jarvey, Amber Fuhringer, Megan Selstad, Ethan Selstad, and James Varga; great-grandchildren; and special companion, Joyce Thomas.

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