Funeral services for Dixie Reece, 81-year-old, Leiter, Wyoming, resident passed away Wednesday, at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Billings, Montana, will be held Tuesday, February 27, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. from the Harness Funeral Home Chapel in Buffalo, Wyoming with Reverend Paul Gilbert officiating. Visitation will be held at the funeral home on Monday from 1:00 to 9:00 p.m. Interment will be at Willow Grove Cemetery, with graveside services following the service. Donations in Dixie’s memory may be made to the St. Francis Animal Shelter, in care of Harness Funeral Home, 351 N. Adams Ave. Buffalo, Wyoming 82834. Online condolences may be made by visiting www.harnessfuneralhome.com
Dixie Lynne Reece was born on February 22, 1936 in Gillette, Wyoming, to William Ernest and Merle (Perret) Reece. Her early years were spent on the family ranch on 20 Mile Creek, in Echeta, about 30 miles northwest of Gillette. The first eight years of her schooling were at a one room rural school. Dixie and her brother Richard, would ride horses to either the Lake School or the Echeta School depending on the availability of teachers. At an early age Dixie and Richard were their dad’s top hands with all the ranch work. Dixie graduated from grade school in 1950. In the fall of 1950, the family moved to a hay ranch on Clear Creek, in Leiter, Wyoming and Dixie planned to ride the bus to Clearmont High School; but, that bus route was discontinued, so she finished high school via correspondence through the University of Nebraska, while continuing to work the ranch with her family. She officially graduated from Campbell County High School with the class of 1955. Dixie’s mother, Merle, passed away in 1961, and Dixie assumed her household responsibilities. On May 16, 1971 Dixie, Richard and their father, Ernest, were gathering cattle for a branding. She was thrown from her horse, severing her spinal cord, resulting in paralysis from the waist down. In November of 1975, her father passed away, and she and Richard ran the family ranches for the next 30 years. Richard passed away on May 16, 2005; and with the help of cousins, friends and neighbors she continued to live on the ranch on Clear Creek.
Dixie was a member of American Quarter Horse Association, Powder River Basin Resource Council, and Campbell County Cattlewomen. Her greatest love was her family. She also loved her dogs, horses, pets and helping her neighbors whenever she could. Dixie was an accomplished artist, and had over 300 paintings commissioned in the US and Canada. She enjoyed God’s great outdoors that are often depicted in her painting.
She is survived by numerous cousins, including Henry Pagel of Kansas; and a great host of friends.