Gem Co. map
Reading & References
Sharon McConnel,
Gem County Coordinator

Lafe E. Cox (1914 - 2002)

Lafe E. Cox, 87, of Yellow Pine and Emmett, passed away Wednesday, April 24, 2002, at St Luke's Regional Medical Center of an unexpected illness.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Monday, April 29, at the Potter Funeral Chapel, Emmett. Friends may call for visitation today from 1 to 6 p.m. at the Potter Funeral Chapel.

"A LEGEND IN HIS OWN TIME," Late was born Oct. 15, 1914, on South Mountain above Sweet, to Clark C. and Beulah (Greene) Cox, early Idaho pioneers. He attended schools in Brownlee and Yellow Pine by horseback and dog team. The family moved in 1927 to a ranch near Yellow Pine where they built a lodge known as the Cox Dude Ranch.

Lafe began working for the U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Geological Survey at the age of 17, packing surveyors and mapping central Idaho. The insight and knowledge of Idaho's back-country was learned through personal experiences.

He married his sweetheart, friend and life's companion, Emma Petersen, at Emmett on March 14, 1939. Lafe and "Babe" who he affectionately called her, recently celebrated 63 years of marriage. Their honeymoon took them on a dog team/sleigh and horseback ride to their ranch at Mile High near Big Creek.

Lafe's career as an outfitter/guide began at Mile High and continued when they purchased the dude ranch from his parents in 1943, They met and enjoyed so many wonderful friends from all over the world with many guests becoming part of their family.

He was a backcountry doctor (when no one else was available), rescuer, practical joker, hunter/ fisherman, forest fire fighter, packer, skilled horseman, and appreciative steward of Idaho's wilderness. "Idaho Mountains Our Home," the title of the book he helped Emma write of their life, is one of his legacies.

He and Emma sold the dude ranch in 1974 and begun building a ranch nearby for themselves and their family to enjoy. He was a pioneer in elk horn and driftwood art and furniture and spent many hours crafting horseshoe art, working with leather, horseback riding to lakes, trips with family and visiting with friends.

Lafe was a charter member and former director of the Idaho Outfitters and Guides, charter member of the Gem County Sheriff's Posse, 50-year member of Masonic Lodge #82, Cascade, member of the Payette River Cattlemen's Association, Gem County Historical Society, the Brownlee Club, and honored by The Idaho Statesman with the Distinguished Citizen award in 1982.

He was "honey" to Emma, "daddy" to Janet Harshfield and Roxie Himes, "grandpa" to Steven Harshfield, Latina Pressley, Greg Himes, Cynthia Hockett and Brian Himes, and "great-grandpa" to Cami, Cassi, and Chris Henderson, Courtney and Danielle Hockett, Niko and Zoie Himes, Greyson Himes, and Curtis and Catherine Pressley, who survive him. Sons-in-law Larry Harshfield and Vernon Himes, and spouses of the grandchildren, Paul Pressley, Denise Himes, David Hockett, and Jodi Himes, also survive him.

He was a dad, brother, grandpa, uncle, cousin, and friend to so many who enjoyed his love, compassion, stories, wisdom, and wit.

He deeply appreciated Dr. Bryon Stone's friendship, concern and care. Memorials may be given in his name to the Brownlee Club, c/o Jamie Chilcott, 7180 Sweet Ola Highway, Sweet 83670.

Copyright © 2009 - Sharon McConnel. All Rights Reserved.

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