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Rupert Hugh Ellis

May 20, 2013 - Staff

Hugh Ellis of Riverton died Saturday, May 11, 2013, at Wind River Health Care. He was 74 years old.

Interment has taken place at Mountain View Cemetery, and there will be no services.

Rupert Hugh Ellis was born Aug. 1, 1938, in Wheatland, the second child of Rupert F. "Doc" and Bernice Ivy (Besack) Ellis. He was educated in Torrington public schools. The Holly Sugar Corp transferred his father to Riverton in 1954, and Mr. Ellis graduated from Riverton High School in 1956.

During high school, he worked as a "printer's devil" in the old molten lead process of The Ranger, which was then a twice-weekly newspaper. After graduation, he enrolled in the School of Journalism at the University of Wyoming. While going to school, he worked as a reporter for the Laramie Boomerang.

He returned to Riverton in 1960 and was a reporter for The Ranger when that newspaper went daily in August 1960. He served as editor of the Kemmerer Gazette from 1962 to autumn of 1965.

He returned to Laramie in 1966 to work as a publications editor for the UW College of Agriculture, at the same time earning a bachelor of science degree in journalism. He later transferred to graduate studies in political science, which qualified him for a public administration internship in New York state government.

He had administrative positions at the Narcotic Addiction Control Commission and the Department of Social Services while living in Albany, N.Y., from 1969 to 1977. He moved to New York City in 1978 and worked eight years for the NYS Department of Mental Hygiene at 2 World Trade Center.

In 1988, he moved to Seattle to participate in the fringe theater scene and creative writing activities at Seattle Central Community College. As time went on, he served a term on the board of directors of Pike Market Senior Center.

He returned to Riverton in the spring of 2001 after the deaths of his sister in Laguna Beach, Calif., and a cousin in Seattle.

His family said his favorite charity in Riverton was PAWS for Life, and he was an avid baseball fan. Among his fondest recollections was having lunch at the White House with President John F. Kennedy while in the company of other Wyoming newspaper editors.

He is survived by two nephews and three nieces in California.

He was preceded in death by his parents and by his sister, Bette Ellis Blake.

Arrangements were under the direction of Davis Funeral Home of Riverton.

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