Wally “Gator” Boggs left this world on Feb. 7, 2021, surrounded by his loving family.
Rosary services were held Feb. 14 at the Boggs residence. Celebration of life mass was held Feb. 15 at the Little Flower Church with cremation to follow.
Wally was born April 15, 1959, in Browning, Mont. to Johnny and Janice Boggs. He grew up on the Eagle Ribs Ranch, southwest of Twin Lakes and the Rose Room in Pendroy. He graduated from Browning High School in 1977.
Growing up, he rode many miles horseback, working cows with his dad and uncles. Wally was a guaranteed top hand to help when needed. As a teenager he helped with breaking horses, trailing cows, haying, milking cows and picking eggs.
He competed in many rodeos throughout his life as a bull dogger and calf roper. He gave his hand at broncs and maybe a few bulls but eventually settled into team roping. He won many awards, buckles and saddles throughout his rodeo career, not to mention all the wild stories of his travels.
In 1978 Wally welcomed his first child into the world, Wally John. Soon after Jeri was welcomed into the world. In 1981, Wally met Kat. Wally continued working construction and rodeoing and soon after Joey was born, a couple years later Katie was born. In 1997, Justin “Manny” came into the world, completing their family.
In 1991 Wally Boggs Construction was established although he had been around equipment and operated a backhoe since age 15 with his father. Wally had a successful company and was a big part of the growth of the Blackfeet Nation community development in all areas. Wally took pride in his work and never left a job undone or messy.
In 1999, Wally expanded his construction and bought a water well drilling rig. He was one of three Native American licensed owner/operators in the state of Montana and the only Native contractor. Wally did many jobs in his career, and when faced with a problem he wasn’t afraid to figure it out. Wally gained experience from all his jobs, working with Riverside Construction, contracting with the City of Browning and Blackfeet Housing. He worked for BIA Roads and built a few roads for the commercial industry. He did many jobs for IHS and taught his kids the meaning of hard work and dedication. His sons, brothers and sons-in-law got to work side by side with Wally learning the ropes. Through it all they share many memories, good and bad.
Wally was a family man. He always made sure everyone was taken care of. He was a father figure to many of his kids’ friends growing up and supported them in everything they did. In 2006, Wally and Kat received an award for Parents of the Year. They didn’t miss any softball games that year.
Wally enjoyed many hobbies in his life. He loved fishing, on ice or on a hot summer day. He loved snow machining, hunting, pack trips to the mountains, hauling his kids to rodeos around the state and Canada. He loved a good branding crew and sitting around telling stories. Wally had many stories to tell that we wish we could share, but there is just not enough time.
Wally is preceded in death by his parents, Janice and Johnny; his grandparents, aunts and uncles, and friends whom he loved dearly.
Wally is survived by his wife, Kat; his children, Wally John, Jeri, Joey (Edward) Flamand, Katie (Steven) Wagner and Justin “Manny” Boggs. He has 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. His brothers are Raymond and Joe Boggs.
Wally will forever live on in the hearts of those that were blessed to know him, near and far.