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Dr. Hilliard Edmond 'Ches' Chesteen

Dr. Hilliard Edmond "Ches" Chesteen, Jr., 93, passed away Tuesday, November 2, 2021, at Thermopolis Rehabilitation and Wellness where he had resided the past few months.

He was born to Hilliard and Mamie (Green) Chesteen on November 21, 1927, in Kilmichael, Miss.

In 1982 he married DonElla Hoffart in Casper, Wyo., which blended a family of eleven children.

They maintained a vacation home in Thermopolis, Wyo., until permanently moving there following retirement in the 80's.

Ches graduated from Mississippi State University in 1953, where he received his bachelor's degree in Public Affairs and Sociology. He then attended Louisiana State University where he received his CSW in Social Welfare and Masters in Social Work. In 1963 he earned his Ph.D. in Social work and Post-Doctorial in Research at Tulane University.

Serving in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1945-1947 he spent the remainder of his lengthy military career in the U.S. Army eventually retiring in 1987 as a Full Bird Colonel. He was active in the World War II, the Korean Conflict, and received the Silver Star in the Korean Conflict. Other decoration and service awards include the Presidential Unit Citation (Navy), the Navy Unit Commendation, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign, World War II Victory Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with hourglass, the National Defense Medal, Korean Conflict Medal and three battle stars, the United Nations Medal, and the Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, and the Meritorious Service Medal.

Dr. Ches' professional career included positions as Professor of Social Work, Department of Social Work at Tulane University, Louisiana State University, and the University of Wyoming. He also had a private practice for a period of time in Louisiana and Wyoming.

Ches had a passion for the military, social work, his dogs, his family and spent retirement building bird houses and gardening.

He is survived by a son, Hilliard Edmond Chesteen III of Baton Rouge, La. ,; daughters, Diane O'Connor of Baton Rouge, La., Denise Wranischar of Livingston, Texas, Delisa Norrell of Colorado Springs, Colo., and Dana Cummings of Tulsa, Okla.; stepchildren, Brian Stice of Kingman, Ariz., Hal Stice of Salem, Ore., Rick Stice of Mexico, Brenda Nelson of Thermopolis, Lynnae Seely of Powell, Wyo .; and numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his wife DonElla; parents; siblings, Edmond Chesteen, Thomas Chesteen, Pressie Chesteen, Era Chesteen and Evelyn Stewart; and stepson Tyler Spicer. 

Funeral services were held Monday, November 8, 2021, at Mortimore Chapel in Thermopolis. Burial followed at Monument Hill Cemetery with VFW Post 2281 rites. Reverend Paul Grossman of the Community Federated Church officiated. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the military charity of your choice.

Mortimore Funeral Home assisted the family with arrangements. Messages may be offered at


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