Melvin (Buck Shot) Salmonsen

1934 – 2018
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Melvin (Buck Shot) Salmonsen passed away April 1, 2018. Buck, as he was called by his friends, was born in Dillon on July 30, 1934, to Elmer and Mary Salmonsen.

Buck spent the majority of his youth on the Brown Ranch up Blacktail, with Eva and Ansel Brown, and Buster and Helen Brown.

After graduation from Beaverhead County High School, he moved to Billings. He worked for the Carter Oil Refinery.

He met Robin Fell and married her in 1957. Two children were born of this union, daughter Debbi Lynn and son John. Robin and he later divorced.

Buck was a strong union man and joined the operating engineer and worked on the Clark Canyon Dam to its completion. He was a lifetime member of the union with over 45 years.

Buck met and married Jo Anne Foster, and one son, Lee, was born of this union. Buck and Jo Anne later divorced.

He was preceded in death by: son John and ex-wife Robin; and brothers Larry and Bill.

He is survived by: daughter Debbi and grandchildren Jane and John; son Lee; sister-in-law Lou Salmonsen; and longtime devoted friend and caregiver David Spehar. Graveside services were held April 5 at Mountain View Cemetery. A guestbook is available online at