The Voice of the Community Since 1909, Serving Moorcroft and Pine Haven, Wyoming

Arnold "Arnie" Altaffer

Arnold Ray "Arnie" Altaffer, 77, of Moorcroft, Wyoming, passed away on Tuesday, June 4, 2024, at the VA Black Hills Healthcare, Fort Meade Hospital at Fort Meade, South Dakota.

Beloved husband, father, grandfather, and friend lost his battle with prostate cancer on June 4, 2024 at Ft. Meade Hospice care in Sturgis, South Dakota.

He was born on August 10, 1946, to Larena (Blake) and James Altaffer in Gillette, Wyoming. He was the youngest of three brothers and one sister.

His childhood and school years were spent on the family ranch northeast of Moorcroft, where he learned early to help with haying, livestock, machinery, critter control (yes, this involved a gun). His family also instilled in him a lifelong love of music.

He went to a rural Crook County school for four years then to the Moorcroft schools until he graduated high school in 1964. He helped his mom on the ranch before working in the "Oil Patch" around Lynch, Wyoming.

In 1967, he received notice ("Congratulations, you are ordered to Report") from Uncle Sam. He entered the U.S. Army in July 1967, spent all of 1968 in Viet Nam during the Tet Offensive. He walked "point" most of his time there and became a squad leader.

After his army discharge in 1969, he continued his education at the University of Wyoming in Laramie. As well as studying, he worked driving a cement truck for Yeoman Construction and playing in a country band on weekends. (He had many fond memories playing with "The Spoilers" at The Cowboy Bar and other venues).

In Laramie he reconnected with a Crook County girl, Penny Tschetter. They were a couple from late 1969 until December of 1974 when they made it "official."

Following his graduation in Business/Finance from UW in 1973 he worked for P&M Construction learning the house building trade. In the fall of 1975, he began work for the Federal Land Bank.

He and Penny moved to Casper and, in 1977, began their family. Their daughter, Natasha Elaine, was followed by son, James Albert, in 1979.

Arnie stayed with the Federal Land Bank as it transitioned to Farm Credit Services of America. He filled several different roles with them over 36 + years. He retired in the spring of 2012, and he and Penny moved to rural Moorcroft close to where they grew up.

In retirement, he helped with the Pine Ridge Community Church; he mowed grass and hayed his and the neighbor's acreages to help minimize fire danger which led him to become a volunteer fire fighter with Crook County, Zone 16. He spent many hours helping with many fires and traveling many miles to fires all over the county.

He was a life member of the UW Alumni Association, The American Legion, the VFW and the NRA. He had a membership in the Texas Trails Museum and the RockPile Museum. Previously, in Casper, he had been a member of the NREF and "The Nic."

Additionally, he was active in the Chamber of Commerce and Prince of Peace Lutheran Church. He volunteered as a Boy Scout Leader and a youth soccer coach.

He loved to hunt and was a lifelong hunter and shooter. He also enjoyed camping and hiking with his family and friends. He hiked and explored in the SW He hiked the Grand Canyon at least ten times, including rim-to-rim hikes.

He and Penny and other friends loved adventure road trips, whether local or to Alabama/Florida. He loved music and played guitar (mostly for himself}. He was proud of his family and his rural heritage. His volunteer firefighting and service on the FAB were very important to him.

He is survived by his wife, Penny, of 49 years; his daughter, Tasha (Jim) Archer of Burns, Wyoming; his son, James (Rebecca) Altaffer of Cairns, Australia; grandchildren: Jackson, Stephen, Nicholas and Ella Archer; Jeremy and Hugo Altaffer. Also, by his sister, Eleanor Franklin of Stevensville, Montana; several sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law and nephews and nieces.

Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. on Friday, June 14 at the (MTC) Moorcroft Town Center in Moorcroft. Burial will be in the Moorcroft Cemetery. If anyone wishes memorial donation may be made to Crook County Fire Zone 16, or the Pine Ridge Community Church or the University of Wyoming.

Arrangements are under the care of Fidler-Roberts & Isburg Funeral Chapel of Sundance. Online condolences may be written at

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