David Allen Ruffatto, 82, of Sidney died at his home in Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2023.
He was born at home on June 13, 1940, in Brockton the sixth child of Antone “Tony” and Anna (Cuccia) Ruffatto. He joined two brothers and three sisters ranging in age from 21 to 8 years old.
He always worked odd jobs, anything to make a few bucks. When he was 12 or 13, he made a deal with the owner of the hardware store. He wanted to make payments so he could order a gun. He would take in his cash for the store owner to hold on to and keep track of how close his total was to the prize. Once he made the final payment, he asked the owner to please order the gun. The gentleman said, “I knew you were going to make it, so I went ahead and ordered it” and pulled it out from under the counter.
He graduated from Brockton High School in 1958 as salutatorian. He always joked that there were only two in his class. He received a full year scholarship to Carroll College in Helena.
After college, he moved back to Brockton and worked at the elevator. He ordered a brand new 1961 Ford Starliner car, black on black. He lived on the highway across from the railroad tracks and saw the train come through with his car on it. He hot footed it to Wolf Point where he paid cash for his new ride. It also happened to be his 21st birthday.
He met Karen Kirn in 1963 through mutual friends. He married Karen on June 26, 1965, and also purchased the Westland Station where he was working in 1965. They moved into the tiny house behind the station to start their married life. Their only child, daughter Diahn, was born in 1967.
In 1969, he became route man for Wildwood Beverages and moved to Plentywood. His ability to read people, along with his social nature, allowed him to excel in this field. The year 1971 saw a change in ownership to Blue Rock, where he continued to be the top route man for many years. In 1980, he was promoted to branch manager and worked another two years.