Harold Jacob “Ole” Ollila, age 92, passed away April 9, 2019, in Clancy Montana at Elkhorn Health & Rehabilitation Center.
He was born March 13, 1927 in Cloquet, MN to Jacob and Melita (Penttila) Ollila. He graduated from Cloquet High School in 1945 and from the University of Minnesota Duluth with a degree in English in 1945. Ole served in the U.S. Army during the Korean war from 1952 to 1954. As a civilian again, he attended the University of North Dakota, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He worked for the Federal Highway Administration in numerous states including Illinois, Michigan, Alaska and Montana until his retirement in 1982.
In 1996, he moved to his beloved state of Montana from Michigan, where he built his home near Helena to pursue his many varied interests. He was a talented woodworker and built and refurbished boats and canoes. He loved to hunt and fish and worked on the ski patrol and was an airplane owner and pilot. Ole was an avid gun collector, Life Member of the NRA and active member and past president of the Weapon Collectors Society of Montana. Ole was very proud of his Finnish heritage, attending numerous Finn Fests and the Minnesota Salolampi Language Camp in Bemidji, MN.
Ole was the best “joke teller” usually with a straight face that could trap you into his dry Finnish humor.
Ole is preceded in death by his parents Jacob and Melita Ollila, a brother Edward Ollila and sisters Shirley Johnson and Ethel Skarp. Ole is survived by nieces and nephews, many great nieces and nephews, and many longtime friends including Dave Mason. His many friends from his “gun show” days will miss him dearly.
We would like to give our greatest appreciation and thanks to Shelby House in East Helena, Montana, the Elkhorn Rehab center in Clancy and the Fort Harrison VA center for their exceptional love and care. Ole’s family would also like to give a special thanks to Dave Mason for all his dedication and special care given to carry out Ole’s wishes. He was Ole’s guardian angel on Earth.
No memorial service will be held.