Montana Agriculture Community Mourns the Passing of Lee Boyer


Today we salute the memory of Gordon Lee Boyer.  We lost Lee last Wednesday, April 15, at the age of 72.

Lee grew up on the Boyer family’s Lazy F Lazy 9 ranch, a homestead established by his great-grandfather in 1900, south of Bridger. A typical ranch kid, his chores included everything from baling hay, corn chopping, working cattle and sheep, feeding and butchering pigs, and probably his least favorite, cleaning the chicken house. Lee attended school in Bridger, graduating in 1965, and went on to graduate from Montana State University in 1969 with a degree in range management.

Upon his graduation from MSU, Lee would earn many awards at both the state and national level. Some of the most notable are the eight years he served as President of the Montana FFA Foundation and his Honorary State FFA degree from the National FFA Organization.

He would continue on his passion for agriculture by managing a fertilizer plant in Pierre, SD and later as a manager at a grain elevator in Shelby, MT. Lee also spent 27 years with the Montana Department of Agriculture in the Ag Development Division; managing marketing programs, ag loans, the hail insurance program, young farmer and rancher loans and more.

After a long-standing career with the Montana Department of Agriculture, Lee served as the Carbon/Stillwater County President along with being an active member of the Montana Farm Bureau Federation Board of Directors. A Farm Bureau member for over 20 years, Lee Boyer was an active volunteer leader at both the county and state level.

Lee met the love of his life, Sarah, and was married on July 7, 2007 at the family ranch. In 2013, Lee and Sarah moved to the family ranch where they remained until his passing. He was an avid reader and loved reading about history, whether it be about the history of the West or about his Scottish heritage. In 2007, he and Sarah traveled to Scotland to learn more about his family roots. He loved to travel the state of Montana while visiting family and friends and experiencing the great State of Montana.

Lee is survived by his mother Vera, his wife Sarah, his sister Vicki & Larry Hylland (Billings, MT) and sons Jeff & Julie (Helena, MT) and Jason & Cassidy (Beavercreek, OH). He is also survived by his grandchildren, Evan Kelly (Bozeman, MT), Erynn & Matt Noem (Belgrade, MT), Madison Boyer (Beavercreek, OH), and Britt & Madison McGuire of Utah. He also had two great grandchildren, Tavin & Tyce Noem. Lee was also loved by his nieces Tracy & Kelly Hylland and nephew Marty (Kat) Hylland as well as a great niece and nephew. He was preceded in death by his father, Gordon and infant sister, Shelley.

A family service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Lee will be accepted at the following organizations:

Montana FFA Foundation –

Beartooth Billings Clinic Hospice – PO Box 590, Red Lodge, MT 59068 – 406-446-2345



Northern Ag Network -2020

Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Taylor Brown

One of Lee Boyer’s many contributions that I will always remember, was that he was the one responsible for organizing a great many of the annual Young Ag Couples Conferences that the Dept of Ag held each winter. He made a difference in the lives of literally hundreds of beginning farm and ranch families…many of whom have gone on to become the pillars of our industry today!

Betsy Allen

I am sorry to learn of Lee’s passing. As a co-worker at the Dept of Agriculture, he was always easy going to work with. His ability to lead was impressive – especially with the young interns. It’s a sad day in the Agriculture community.

John Paterson

What a true gentleman. A real friend to Ag. I will miss him.

Paula Steinbeisser

So sad to hear of this great loss! Lee was so great at the Young Ag couple’s Conference my husband, Russ, & I attended in the 90’s. So great that we came back the next year as a host couple at Lee’s invitation. We always enjoyed visiting with him at Farm Bureau events throughout the years. What a blessing he was to MT agriculture.

Bob Lee

Kathy and I really enjoyed working with Lee at the young ag couples conference. A real passion for Ag and young producers. Montana is a better place because of Lee.

Vicki Baker

My heart is saddened at the loss of Lee Boyer. We spent numerous hours discussing Agriculture in Montana Schools. I count him as one of a few, in state government, that worked for the betterment of Montana agriculture and the issues of it’s families. Yes, Lee, I am preaching to the choir. Rest in peace friend.

Grant Zerbe

Lee was a true Aggie at heart. Kim Murray and myself worked with him to setup a check off for Pulses crops as they were getting going in production in MT. So many times the Helena bureaucrats wanted to impose restrictions or control over producers dollars, and Lee helped steer us around all the land mines! He truly had us as producers in mind as he fulfilled his job at the MT dept of Ag. Thanks Lee.

Kim Murray

I first met Lee in 2004. Pulse crop acres were starting to expand in Montana. A few of us growers decided we needed a check-off assessment. Lee was the Bureau Chief for the Dept. of Ag at the time. We had a meeting in Helena and it took off from there. He was great to work with. The Montana Pulse Advisory Committee was formed. He was the Ag Department’s representative on our committee until he retired. Lee…you had a profound impact on those of us who were fortunate enough to work with you on our committee. RIP my friend.

John Mandy

I met Lee in 1990 while on a Western Australian Parliamentary Select Committee into Land Conservation. Lee helped by organising an extensive itinerary for us in the Bridger and Helena regions of Montana. His extensive knowledge of agricultural matters was obvious and sincerely appreciated. A strong friendship was struck up and I returned to Helena in 1996 with my youngest daughter who has fond memories of her visit.

I returned to Helena again in the early 2010s to renew our friendship and meet his wonderful life partner Sarah. They were like two peas in a pod.

Lee was a kind and considerate man and who I will always consider to be a real friend.

My sympathy to his wife Sarah and his family. May he RIP.
John Mandy, Perth, Western Australia

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x