Cover photo for Ernest "Fred" Adkins Jr.'s Obituary
Ernest "Fred" Adkins Jr. Profile Photo

Ernest "Fred" Adkins Jr.

January 14, 1944 — June 15, 2023


Fred Adkins, 79
With great sadness, we announce the passing of our beloved Ernest Frederick Adkins Jr on June 15. Fred passed away from a spontaneous intracranial hemorrhage after a seven-year battle with a-fib/congestive heart failure in Kalispell, surrounded by family and friends. Fred was a kind-hearted and loving person who touched the lives of everyone he met and will be deeply missed by his family and friends.

Born on January 14, 1944, Fred was born and raised in Livingston, Montana. After graduating from Park County High in 1962, Fred began a lifelong career in the railroad in 1962 and retired from BNSF in 2004; Fred was a proud member of the AFL/CIO union and was a vocal supporter of unions. Fred served in the Army National Guard from 1966-1971. In 1970, Fred and his wife, the former Mary Carlisle, moved to Kalispell, where they raised their three sons. Fred and Mary were divorced in 1992. Fred was also married to Julie Joseph from 1995 to 2011. Fred spent winters in Kona, Hawaii, and summers in Kalispell, Montana, for the past decade.  

Fred had many interests and hobbies. He enjoyed being outside, especially in the Pacific Northwest and spent many hours pursuing this passion. He was an avid jogger/runner, hiker, and cyclist and enjoyed camping, kayaking, and spending time in Glacier National Park. In his retirement, Fred enjoyed discovering his artistic talents in pottery, watercolors, painting, and photography. Fred loved spending time with his family and countless friends. Whether traveling to new places or simply spending winters in Hawaii or summers in Montana, Fred took great pride in his "aloha" spirit, newly-discovered vegan lifestyle, and his family, especially his children's and grandchildren's accomplishments.

Fred will be remembered for his kind and accepting spirit, infectious laugh, quirky sense of humor, artistic flair, and ability to make friends and connect with people. He was a true inspiration to all who knew him, and Fred's memory will live on in the hearts of those he touched.

Fred is survived by his three sons Greg (and Lori) Adkins of Kalispell, Kurt (and Katy) Adkins of Kalispell, and Brad of Portland, Oregon. Fred had three grandchildren, Zac (and Dusty, and great-granddaughter Leslie) of Kalispell, Brock (and his fiance Natalie) of Bloomfield, CT, and Mac (who will be attending the University of Arizona this fall). He is also survived by his sister Nancy Adkins of Livingston, Montana, as well as relatives and friends. Fred is preceded in death by his parents, Ernest and Rose Adkins, his only brother Ernie, his older sister Florence, and countless aunts, uncles, and extended family.

Please join us in celebrating Fred's life on July 21 at 3 pm at the Village Greens Community Center (195 Nicklaus Avenue, Kalispell, MT). His family will later spread his ashes in Glacier National Park and in Kona, Hawaii, Fred's two favorite places in the world.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to Northwest Rails to Trails (P.O. Box 1103, Kalispell, MT  59903)  (a group he has volunteered for since the 1980s) or The Donkey Mill Art Center (78-6670 Mamalahoa Hwy, Holualoa, HI 96725) (a place he spent time perfecting his ceramic talent).

Friends are encouraged to visit our website at to leave notes of condolences for the family. Buffalo Hill Funeral Home and Crematory caring for the family.



To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ernest "Fred" Adkins Jr., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Friday, July 21, 2023

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Mountain time)

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Village Greens Community Center


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