Rosemary Perkins left the loving arms of her family on June 3, 2018 only to be welcomed into the great Kingdom of her Lord and Saviour.
Born November 11, 1926 in Sheridan Wyoming, she was the only child of Benjamin Bond Perkins and Margerite. Snider Perkins. Rosemary’s roots were deeply bedded in her beloved Wyoming soil. A fifth-generation family, she boasted “We were here before it was a state”. Rosemary was very proud of her Sheridan and Johnson county ancestry. Early Wyoming legislator members included E.U. Snider, the first settler of Johnson County and B.F. Perkins, founder of the Bank of Commerce, and early owner of the Wrench Ranch. B.F. Perkins created the B.F. and Rose H. Perkins Foundation providing philanthropic opportunities for eligible students which is still in existence today.
After her father’s untimely death from pneumonia, Infant Rosemary and her mother moved to the family homestead on Crazy Woman Creek in Johnson County. She along with her mother would spend the winters in Beverly Hills with her uncle B.F. Perkins. As a result of a difficult child birth, Rosemary was one of the first recipients to receive a muscle transplant which was made possible by her uncle B.F. Perkins
Even though the winters were mild in Beverly Hills, Rosemary and her mother yearned to return to her family roots in Wyoming where she spent her childhood years growing up with Margerite.’s sister Mabel Snider Driskill and her three children John Driskill, Lee Meike and Marguerite Way. Attending county school the children always carried rocks to throw at rattlesnakes that crossed their paths much to the anxiety of their widowed mothers.
Rosemary had a fond remembrance of Joe Lefors, famous lawman for his pursuit of Butch Cassidy and his capture of Tom Horn. While at the widow Cunningham’s Sunday dinner, he would take her by the hand and teach her how to shoot a pistol in the cherry grove.
Rosemary and her mother moved to Sheridan during her junior high and high school years purchasing the family home at 450 S. Thurmond. Rosemary graduated from Sheridan High School and attended Stephens College in Columbia, MO where a special chaperoned rail car was sent to pick up students. Rosemary then attended Montana State in Bozeman, MT where she was instrumental in starting the college’s first rodeo team. As the only female to major in the animal husbandry program as she forged new territory for women who followed…at the time not an easy path! She also enjoyed the ski team. Her many fun times as a Pi Beta Phi were always great memories.
Rosemary’s love of horses took her to The Gallatin Mountains with a newly unbroken pack string. Packing Dudes many miles in intrepid weather was always an adventure. Wrangling with her cousin, Arlen, at South Fork Lodge, which was owned by John and Tressa Driskill prepared her for anything life could throw at her she quoted. She loved all equine events whether it was watching Suzy at polo, going to horse races with Debby, or going to horse shows with Emory. Rosemary’s love for aviation flourished under the tutelage of Dick Yentzer and Oliver Wallop. With hours of aerobatics before she even had her driver’s license she became one of Wyoming’s youngest pilots. The next two generations followed in those footprints.
She met future husband Al Flanigin from Oklahoma when he arrived to play basketball on Sheridan College’s first basketball team. Their union resulted in six children which as an only child growing up was Rosemary’s greatest joy.
A Cody, Wyoming move helped launch Rosemary into different direction with the challenge to raise four children on her own. She founded Sunlite Construction and specialized in demolition work completing the demolition of the Meeteetee school building and campus buildings at The University of Wyoming.
Rosemary, always a good will ambassador for Sheridan and Johnson County returned to Sheridan where she purchased the Acme Power Plant with plans to start a co-electric plant and raise hydroponic vegetables. As this project did not become visible, it did not stop her from her next project of purchasing the Sheridan Inn. She felt passionate about the Inn and its doubtful future. She felt honored to be a part of it’s history although she was able to do many things for the building, there were just too many more to do. She was able to provide many jobs for the community and was thankful for the many friendships this provided.
Rosemary not only loved her family, she was her family, and her family is her. She instilled so many different qualities in each of her six children that has made them who they are today. She was proceeded in death by her parents Benjamin Bond Perkins, Margerite Snider Perkins and a son Alfred Sean Flanigin. Rosemary is survived by children: Deborah, Patrick, Phillip, Suzy, and Kevin Flanigin.
Visitation will be held at Harness Funeral Home in Buffalo, Wednesday, June 13, from 1:00-9:00pm and at
St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Sheridan, Thursday, June 14, from 8:00- 9:30am prior to the funeral service.
The funeral service Thursday, June 14, at 10:00am. Graveside service at Willow Grove Cemetery in Buffalo at 2:00pm.