Ted Berst was born to Amelia and John Berst on Feb. 17, 1920, in Huskins Basin.
Ted’s father died when Ted was nine years old. Ted quit school to help feed the family, first by selling newspapers on a Billings street corner, which he had to fight and win in order to keep. He also worked at other odd jobs doing what work he could find during the Depression. At 18 years of age, he joined the Civil Conservation Corps and did many things but was listed as a mechanic. Ted was never without work and had a tremendous work ethic.
At age 21, Ted worked as a ranch hand in Montana. It was here he met the love of his life, Minnie Kober. She worked at the same ranch as a cook’s helper. In August of 1941, they were married as Ted was persistent and would not take no for an answer.
Ted worked various jobs during tough times. He was a roofer, baker’s helper, broke horses, picked crops, a theater projectionist, butcher, truck driver, farmer, worked in a cannery and a smelter, finally becoming a bar owner of Ted’s Tavern in Park City, while still farming.
In 1941, daughter Carolyn was born, followed by daughter Sharon, who died in infancy. Three more children would follow: Roger, Bruce and Diana.
Rather than wait to be drafted, Ted joined the U.S. Navy in 1944. He was stationed stateside, where he worked ordinance/ munitions until his honorable discharge as a Seaman 2nd Class. Ted was very proud of his military service and was a member of the VFW the remainder of his life.
Ted was the last of 15 siblings. Ted is survived by Minnie, his loving wife of 75 years; their children, Carolyn (Frank) Adams of Dillon, Roger (Debbie) of Kiowa, Colorado, Bruce (Tammy) of Casper, Wyoming, and Diana (Wayne) Edwards of Billings, in addition to nine grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren and 12 great-great-grandchildren.
Funeral services are at 10 a.m., March 21, at Smith’s Laurel Funeral Chapel. Interment at Park City Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, Ted requested donations to the Park City VFW.