Ben D. Jernberg died Sunday, June 17th, at St. Vincent's Emergency Room in Billings of a heart condition complicated by diabetes. Ben was born January 4th, 1931 in Lorenzo, Idaho., He went to school in Idaho at the Level School House, Terreton Grade School, and Idaho Falls High School. He was an outstanding high school athlete, earning letters in football, track, and boxing.
He held the State Track Record for the 100 yard dash for many years. Ben served in the Naval Air Force after high school. Upon his return to Idaho, he married Peggy Wheeler on Sept. 8th, 1950, and they moved to Mud Lake, Idaho, to farm with his father, Dave Jernberg. Ben entered a partnership with his friend, Don Burtenshaw, called B & J Cattle Company, to buy and sell livestock.
When Don went into politics, Ben continued with the business that is still operating today. Ben's favorite pastime, horseracing, began in the 1960's with cutter racing. He also had winners with his quarter horses in flat racing. But later in life, Ben had the most success with Thoroughbreds.
His horses won many races in Billings. In 1989, he won both the Montana All West Futurity and Derby. Most recently he had spent most of his time with his horses at Turf Paradise in Phoenix, AZ. Shortly before Ben's passing, his latest and greatest win was in Hollywood Park.
Ben is survived by a loving family: Peggy, his wife of 57 years, his children, David Richard Jernberg And Patty Barnes (Tim) of Billings, Kristine Rising (Bob) of Goldendale, WA., Kathy Kutzman (Jerry) and Mary Lou Covey (Chuck) of Whitefish, Mt. Eleven grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. He is also survived by two sisters, Elaine Munns (Glen) of Rexburg, Idaho, and Kay Bare (Ken), Terreton Idaho. He will be missed each and every day.
Funeral services were held at 2:00 p.m. Monday, June 25, 2007 at the Mud Lake Community Church, with Pastor Bryan Gomez, officiating. A viewing for family and friends was held Monday at the church from 12:45 to 1:45 p.m. before the service. Burial followed at the West Jefferson Cemetery in Terreton with military rites under the direction of the Verle Skidmore Post #8893. Arrangements were under the direction of Buck-Miller-Hann Funeral Home.