We are saddened to announce that the oldest living relative of the explorer General Pike, Zebulon Montgomery Pike Jr., died on October 20, 2019 at 2:30 am, in Salida, Colorado, at the age of 97.
Not only was Monty a huge part of our association (VP Emeritus), he was our friend, a family member, and a patriot. Monty was a personable gentleman who served his fellow man and country throughout his lifetime.
Tracing the Pike Lineage
Monty survived his three brothers: Edward LeRoy (1924-2015 age 91), Dennis Hewitson (1926-2015 age 89), and Clifford Llewllyn (1928-1990 age 62), and will be sorely missed by his beloved wife, Grace. They were married 73 years, approaching their 74th anniversary in 3 months.
Monty, a Golden, Colorado native born on Monday 5, 1922, was the son of Zebulon Montgomery (Monty) Pike Sr. (1900-1965) and Marion “Emily” Dennis Pike (1897-1991). His parents were aged 22 & 25 respectively upon his birth.
Monty was especially proud of his ancestor, the explorer who passed through the Chaffee County area and spent Christmas of 1806 at Great Bend on the Arkansas River, close to Salida. An interpretive panel on U.S. 285 tells the story of that encampment. In 2006, on the 200th anniversary of Pike’s expedition, he attended many events commemorating his famous ancestor, and led 140 Pike family members to the top of Pikes Peak in his Pike uniform.
Marriage and Education
Monty met his wife to be, Grace V Fisher, a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native, during WWII through family friends and corresponded by mail while he was overseas. They were married a few weeks after his return from WWII.
Monty attended University of Denver, and graduated with a BS at 28.
In the 1980’s, Grace and Monty moved to Salida, Colorado, enjoying many lively friendships, including with our President, Harv Hisgen and wife, Bonnie.
When the United States declared war on Japan in 1942, Monty registered for the draft in Golden at age 20. He served in the active military from November 30, 1942 to January 8, 1946 under General George Patton in France, Germany and Czechoslovakia, attaining the rank of master sergeant in WW2. He served in a Headquarters Company intelligence and reconnaissance platoon. His platoon got into Germany at the end of the Battle of the Bulge in 1945 and released prisoners from Stalag 14. He earned 7 battle stars during WWII and was awarded the Bronze Star for bravery.
Back home in Golden, he joined the National Guard in Golden. They were ordered into active duty in August 1950 and sent to Korea. He retired from the National Guard at age 64, in 1985, with the rank of Captain.
Law Enforcement & Community Service
He was a Captain of Jefferson County Mounted Posse in 1963. He also served in the Golden Fire Department.
A LIFE WELL LIVED
We salute you, Zebulon Montgomery Pike Jr!