Jeffrey Fred McAtee, 57 passed away on March 31, 2023 in Kalipsell, MT.
Jeff was born on January 5th 1966, in Browning MT.
Jeff was adopted at the age of 11 months by Robert (Bob) McAtee and Leona Kay Ness McAtee, who lived in Kalispell. After the adoption was finalized, upon entering the home of Kay’s parents, Bob and Kay were asked “uh, who’s baby is that?”, Kay proudly said “this is MY baby”. Jeff loved the time with his Grandpa and Grandma Ness in Fortine, MT, and Grandma Mac (McAtee) in Kalispell. Never one to take the easy route, Jeff never actually crawled, preferring instead to scoot across the floor on his butt until walking and eventually running.
Jeff attended grade school at Boorman School in the Smith Valley area west of Kalispell. He attended Junior High at KJHS and then Flathead High School in Kalispell. Jeff excelled in mechanic’s class, discovering a passion that would feed his interests and career path including welding, engine maintenance, fabrication and skilled labor.
After high school, Jeff moved to California, settling in the Desert Hot Springs area of Southern California. He worked in the windmill fields there, becoming a go-to climber for maintenance, with no fear of heights and nerves of steel. He worked in the industry for many years, meeting his first wife Misty Wallace and starting his family, before moving back to Kalispell in the late 1990’s. He worked at different times at the aluminum plant in Columbia Falls, Pierce Manufacturing, wind farms across southwestern Washington and Alaska, as well as for himself under the name FBI Energy. Most recently He managed the Island Noodles franchise across Montana, Arizona, and Washington. Jeff was a volunteer EMT and attended and graduated nursing school from Salish Kootenai College in Pablo, MT. Jeff worked to play, loving to travel with his kids Austin and Kyrstin.
Jeff absolutely loved his kids Austin and Kyrstin, traveling and exploring new places. He loved any adventure and encouraged others to seek new experiences as well. Jeff lived life to the fullest and in the now.
Jeff was preceded in death by Grandpa Clarence Ness, Grandma Effie Ness, Mother Kay Ness, Grandma Mac (Esther McAtee), Father Robert McAtee, Step-Grandparents Leonard and Helen Kaeding, Uncle Larry McAtee.
He is survived by his son Austin McAtee and Girlfriend Becki Sullens, Daughter Kyrstin McAtee and Boyfriend Tommy Kramer, Brother David McAtee and his wife Heidi McAtee and their kids Brady, Parker and Cooper, Step-brother Robert McMannamy and his husband Tim Chase, Step-sister Pamela McMannamy her son Darin Owens, and many extended family members and loving friends.
Jeff lived his life at full speed at all times. He would often say “travel, make memories, see and experience new things. Live in the moment and live as many new adventures as you can”. As he got older, this became more and more important to him.
Jeff wasn’t one for funerals. He wanted to give his friends and family an excuse to share stories, laugh and have one more party in his honor. A Celebration of Life will be held at the Rainbow Bar in Kalispell, on Friday, April 28th beginning at 4pm. Please come and share your favorite Jeff memories. Austin Funeral & Cremation Services in Whitefish is caring for Jeff’s family.
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