Douglas Michael Meissner
Douglas Michael Meissner passed away peacefully at home with his wife of 40 years by his side in Billings on Sunday, January 21, 2018 at the age of 68, after an 18-month battle with cancer and kidney failure.
Doug is survived by his wife, Pamela; five sons, Christopher, Mark (Amy), Ryan, Adam (Emily), and Jeffrey (Laura); four grandchildren, Luke, Jake, Brooke, and Nova; and brothers, Gary (Pam), Rick (Carole), Tom (Debbie), Tim (Lonnie), and Ron; and countless cousins, nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Raymond and Margaret.
Doug was born on August 24, 1949 in Bismarck, N.D. to Ray and Margaret Meissner. He spent his childhood running around his grandparents’ farm in Glen Ullin, N.D. with his five brothers. His father’s job as a store manager at JC Penney took the family to Minot, N.D., Plentywood, Mont., and Glendive. Doug attended Catholic parochial schools when he was young and played Babe Ruth baseball, eventually attending Dawson County High School in Glendive where he starred on the basketball and football teams. He graduated from high school in 1967 and from MSU-Billings in 1972 with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He married Pamela Jean Waller in 1978, the love of his life. He started his career with Kmart Corporation in 1972 as an Assistant Manager Trainee in the Rapid City, S.D. store. He steadily climbed the corporate ladder at Kmart, taking his family to Bozeman, Mont., Boise, Idaho, Rexburg, Idaho, Bellevue, Wash., Tucson, Ariz., Los Angeles, Calif., Sacramento, Calif., and Rochester Hills, Mich.; eventually taking the role of Senior Vice President of Operations. After a short stint with Blue River Financial in Grand Blanc, Mich., Doug moved with his wife back home to Montana where he started his second career with Brewer Dental Center in Billings, as their Chief Operating Officer. Of all his many professional accomplishments, he was most proud of the impact he made at Brewer Dental Center, the relationships he developed, and the culture and community that he helped to foster there.
Doug is remembered for his unwavering integrity, steadfast leadership, calm demeanor, un-matched work ethic, loyalty and stability that he brought to every situation. His family remembers his unconditional love, his incredible sense of humor, and his ability to captivate through telling great and memorable stories. Doug was most proud of the growth and development of his sons (and not shy about it), all who exemplify his qualities through his persistent mentorship. Nonetheless, he humbly attributed all his personal accomplishments and the men his sons became to his equally amazing wife, Pam. Nothing reveals this sentiment more than when in his last days, Doug said to Pam, “I’ve been with you over 40 years, and still, all I want is for you to be right by my side.”
In between all Doug’s personal and professional endeavors, he passionately enjoyed playing golf at every opportunity and fly fishing on the rivers of Montana – never more so than with his family, friends and colleagues. Doug loved spending time with his entire family; he looked forward to Christmas and other family trips six months in advance, and frequently was the ringleader in organizing family reunions.
A memorial service is scheduled for 12 p.m. on Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at St. Patrick’s Co-Cathedral in Billings, with a reception to follow at the Knights of Columbus hall at 1:15 p.m. All are welcome to attend to celebrate Doug’s life. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Riverstone Hospice, the American Cancer Society, or the National Kidney Foundation.