Russ Olney, age 90, of Kadoka, South Dakota, died on Thursday, April 23, 2020 at the Kadoka Nursing Home.
Russell F. Olney was born December 17, 1929 on the family ranch near Powell, S.D. He spent his early years on the ranch, starting school in Powell. The family moved to Kadoka in August 1936 where he continued his education graduating in 1948.
He enlisted in the U.S. Navy November 20, 1948 and was honorably discharged on November 19, 1949, serving in the Korean Conflict. Upon discharge he was concurrently transferred to the U.S. Naval Reserve under the designation of USNEV, Class V-6 “for a period of (6) years or until sooner discharged by competent authority.” Russ worked construction after his naval discharge.
On March 4, 1954 he was united in marriage to Viola Hedeen in Pierre, S.D. To this union was born two children, Marcy and Rusty.
Russ attended Sioux City Barber College in Sioux City, Iowa graduating in 1955. After graduation they moved briefly to Belle Fourche, S.D. then to Rapid City, S.D. where Russ began a career as a barber. They later moved to Kadoka where Russ operated "Russ' Barber Shop" which was a career that lasted over 60 years. Never ones to be idle Russ and Vi had multiple business ventures through the years including a motel, The Branch Store, a gas station/drive-in, a painting business and always had a used car or something for sale. In 1976 they began managing The Club 27. The year 1989 brought a new venture The Pizza Shed. During these years Russ also found time to drive the school bus for a number of years.
Russ was a lifetime member of the American Legion Post 27. He enjoyed Monday night poker, bowling and attending all sporting events. His favorite hobby was keeping old equipment running even if it involved Duct tape and J-B Weld.
Blessed for having shared his life are his daughter, Marcy (Bart) Ramsey, Philip; his son, Rusty (Laure Hildebrand) Olney, Kadoka; his granddaughter, Cara (Brook) Parent, Ham Lake, MN; his grandson, Chad (Paulette) Ramsey, Philip; great-grandchildren, Ramsey, Peyton, Caden and Wyatt Parent, Charlee Ramsey, Jerica (Danny) Muzick, Jadyn, Jyntre, Jyrzee Coller, Audrea and Lucien Hildebrand; great-great-grandchildren; Ezekiel and Nash Muzik; a sister Diane Paulson, Rapid City; brother Richard (Bud) Olney, Kadoka; brother-in-law Andy Anderson, Watertown and numerous nieces and nephews.
Russ was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Viola; his parents, Richard (Dick) and Marie Olney; a brother, Robert (Bob) Olney; sisters-in-law, Dode Smith, Barbara Stone, Ethel Anderson, Norma Olney and Gladys Olney; brothers-in-law, Clifford Starkjohn, Gene Stone and Gordon Paulson.
A come and go viewing will be held from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 28, at the Rush Funeral Chapel in Kadoka.
Graveside services will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 29, at the Kadoka Cemetery with Pastor Kathy Chesney officiating. Live streaming will be available for the graveside service so you can watch the service right from this webpage if you do not wish to attend in person.
A memorial has been established to the Kadoka Nursing Home. Cards and memorials may be sent to P.O. Box 503 Kadoka, SD 57543 or P.O. Box 513 Philip, SD 57567.
Arrangements are with Rush Funeral Home of Philip.