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Clayton Codden


Clayton Codden, 88, formerly of Havre, Montana passed away on Tuesday, February 20, 2018 at the Billings Clinic Hospital. A Vigil was held on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 and a Funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 1 p.m. all at St. Jude Thaddeus Catholic Church; burial to follow at Highland Cemetery. Memorials may be made in Clayton’s name to The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Greater Northwest Chapter, 2047 Broadwater, Suite 2, Billings, MT 59102; St. Jude Thaddeus Church; or to a charity of donor’s choice. Holland and Bonine Funeral Home has been entrusted with services and arrangements. Please visit Clayton’s online memorial page and leave a message of condolence for his family at

Clayton was born on October 8, 1929 in Cass Lake, Minneosta to George and Elma (Wolden) Codden. He was raised in Cass Lake until the family moved to Superior, Wisconsin in 1945, where Clayton graduated from Superior Cathedral High School in 1948. Later he attended the Dunwoody Industrial Institute in Minneapolis where he received his electrical education. He began employment with the United States Steel Company in Duluth in the Open Hearth from 1948 to 1951 and then moved to St. Paul to begin his career with the Great Northern Railway Company where he worked over the years as an Electrician, Electrical Draftsman and Electrical Supervisor.

In 1950, Clayton Codden married Pauline Lugoski in Superior, Wisconsin. The couple had nine children throughout their marriage. The family moved to Havre in 1961 when Clayton transferred to the Great Northern Mechanical Department. After his retirement from the railroad, he started his own electrical business: Codden and Sons. He kept his Electrician’s License current many years beyond his retirement.

Clayton enjoyed fishing and hunting with his sons. His garden was his pride and joy, giving him great peace. He and Pauline travelled the United States in their treasured Airstream. They spent their winters in Downey, California, in the home of his mother after her death. He enjoyed genealogy, history, music, dancing with his wife and daughters, and the performing arts. He was a man of integrity who treated everyone with love and kindness.

He took pride in community involvement: he ran for Montana Senate District 4; he was involved in the Boy Scouts of America (2 years as a Scout Master); Havre City Park and Recreation Board; the Havre Chamber of Commerce Legislative Committee; the Fraternal Order of Eagles; the St. Jude Thaddeus Pastoral Council; the Knights of Columbus; the Cursillos in Christianity (Cum Christo); and the City Council (he was president a portion of that time.) One of Clayton’s fondest community memories was organizing and hosting the “Hands Across the Border” Convention with the Wally Byam Caravan Club (Airstream owners) when this event came to Havre. He set up tours, meals, and meetings to showcase how much “Havre Has It,” and incorporated many Hi-Line attractions. Members came from throughout Canada and Montana for this event.

Clayton was preceded in death by his parents; all nine of his siblings; son John Codden; and grandchildren: R. Clayton Codden III, and Katharine Mary Byrd.

He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Pauline of Billings; children: Annette Byrd of Havre; Linda (John) Stilger of Billings; Richard (Chris) Codden of St. Cloud; Ed Codden of Billings; George Codden of Sauk Rapids; Bob (Kim Nelson) Codden of Chicago, Illinois; Kathy (Bob) Cappiello of Corpus Christi, Texas; and Mike Codden of St. Cloud; 19 grandchildren; 26 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.

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