Bartling, Floyd William (Unknown - June 18, 1984)

F.W. Bartling services June 21

by BOB TKACZ Staff Writer

Douglas Budget - June 21, 1984

"They called him "The Little Warrior" in the legislature." Leona Bartling said of her husband.

Floyd W. Bartling, one time president of the state Senate, commander of the American Legion Department of Wyoming and the founder of Boys State ended his battles this week when he died of cancer in the Cheyenne Veterans Administration hospital.

Bartling, who was 87, was intensely devoted to his country and to young people. He channeled his patriotism into continuing work throughout his life to establish the means of Wyoming youth to learn about their country and to grow in themselves.

Bartling was born in Posey, Illinois, one of three sons of Henry and Elizabeth Bartling. But he became a westerner early in his life when the family moved to Montana to try its luck at homesteading.

His public service to his country began in December 1917 when Floyd enlisted in the Army Air Corps at Musselshell, Montana.

After seeing action in the Chateau (sic)

Two years later he was elected president of the Douglas Kiwanis Club and by 1935 had been chosen Master of the Douglas Masons Blue Lodge.

During this period his interest in youth and the operation of state government also grew.

From 1925 through 1942 he was involved in boy scouting, including a tenure as scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 29, and in 1939 state finance chairman for the scouts.

In 1938 he became legislative chairman of the American Legion's Department of Wyoming and in 1940 chairman of the department's Student Loan Fund, Bartling began his career in the state legislature in 1939 when he was elected to the Wyoming House of Representatives.

In his first term he was appointed chairman of the Corporations and Public Utilities Committee. In his second term he became chairman of the Revenue Committee.

After four years in the House he won a seat in the state Senate where he remained until retiring as president after the 1953-54 session.

Bartling ran for governor in 1954 in Thierry-Argonne Forest campaign with the American Expeditionary Forces he was mustered out of the service as a non-commissioned officer with an honorable discharge in 1918.

On his discharge papers in the space describing the serviceman's character is the word "excellent."

Returning from the war, Floyd also went back to Illinois to study linotype operation at the Merganthaler School in Chicago. After graduation he returned to Musselshell, the home of his future bride.

Floyd and Leona Bartling came to Douglas on September 3, 1922, after first stopping in Glenrock to be married.

Here Floyd worked as a typesetter and machinist for the Douglas Enterprise.

He left the newspaper business two years later for a position with Spears Lumber Company and in the course of the next 38 years rose to co-owner of the business which was renamed the Florence Lumber Company. He retired from the lumber business in 1962.

While his private and business life progressed he devoted equal time to the the Republican Party primary election, but after losing to Milward Simpson, who was eventually elected, left governmental service.

During his years in the legislature, however, he continued to receive honors and work with youth.

In 1942 he was chosen Chef De Guerre, 40 & 8, Vaiture No. 321 in Casper.

In 1946 Floyd founded Wyoming Boys State, five years after his wife Leona founded Wyoming Girls State.

"You can't teach legislation from a book. It's the behind the door things that run the legislature, the committees and caucuses," Bartling said in an interview last year.

Floyd served as director of Boys State in its inaugural year and again in 1955. Served on Boys State Board since 1946. That same year he was elected as commander of the Legion's Department of Wyoming.

"We had a happy life. We had a good life," Mrs. Bartling said this week. "Everything good that's happened to us was because we lived in Douglas. We grew with the town."

Funeral services for Floyd W. Bartling will be held at 2 p.m., Thursday, June 21 in Christ Episcopal Church. Officiating will be Father James Wolfkiel. He will be interred at Douglas Park Cemetery following ceremonies of the Douglas Masonic Lodge and American Legion Samuel Mares Post No. 8.

In addition to his wife, Leona, he is survived by a son, Everett Lee Moffett, daughter-in-law Ginger Moffett both of Salem, Oregon, his sister-in-law Hazel S. Bowers, of Wickenburg, Arizona, and two granddaughters, Marilee Moffett, of Salem, and Ginnie Lee North, of Stoneham, Massachusetts.

He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers and nephew.

Serving as pallbearers are Jim Willox, Bill Gray, Sam Bass, Dave Nauman, Scott Carver and Brad Johnson. Honorary pallbearers are Fred Smith, Col. Barton Sailors, Vern Knisely, Beef Bolln, Bob Macy, Kurt Coulter, Lawson Swope, Gene Payne, Jr., Dennis Rogers, and Chic Madia.

Memorials have been established to the Converse County Cancer Fund, Christ Episcopal Church or to the choice of the donor.

Converse Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.

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