Introducing The Class of 2018: Kelly and Louise Stith

NLJ Staff

Kelly and Louise Stith are the first married couple to be inducted into the NHS Hall of Fame. Kelly, Newcastle High School Class of 1973, was born in Des Moines, Iowa, to Clarence “Arkie” and Agnes “Aggie” Stith on April 4, 1955. The Stith family moved to Newcastle in the spring of 1965. Louise, Class of 1975, was born in Newcastle to Marvin and Anna Mae Paulson on April 20, 1957. In 1972 Kelly and Louise started dating. They were high school sweethearts and married Aug. 23, 1975. 

After graduation, Kelly started working at Frank’s Skelly, a full-service gas station, before moving on to Dave’s Texaco station. After they married, he worked at the Tesoro refinery for a period. He then worked at the Osage Refinery, followed by employment at Updike Brothers in 1981 as a safety officer and parts serviceman. In August of 1984 Kelly left Updike Brothers and fully devoted himself to Black Hills Auto Salvage. While running the 24-hour emergency service, Kelly also served 25 years for the Newcastle Volunteer Fire Department. During this time he also volunteered much of his time teaching Red Cross First Aid, CPR and defensive driving. In addition, he served 16 years for the local ambulance service and funeral home, and worked for Advanced Medical Systems out of Rapid City, S.D. In 1984, he founded Advanced Communications Systems and later partnered with Richard Klinker to form Advanced Communications Systems Inc., which was instrumental in bringing cellular services to Weston County. Kelly served on many boards during this time, including the Weston County Fire Protection District and the Hospice Board. After nearly 40 years of providing towing and roadside assistance for many of the auto clubs including AAA, Kelly “Mater” finally sold the towing service, but still operates Black Hills Auto Salvage.

During Louise’s high school years, she worked at the Howdy Drive-in. In March of 1976 she became a teller at the First State Bank of Newcastle. She has worked in many departments and is currently vice president and cashier. On Oct. 1, 1999, Kelly and Louise purchased the Sage Motel and ran the family business until Nov. 1, 2016. In addition to their four children being employed at the motel, they employed a number of high school students, supporting each in their academic endeavors. Louise is part of the Beta Sigma Phi sorority and is on the Newcastle Housing Board. In her free time, Louise enjoys card-making and crafting.

When asked about their accomplishments, they said, “All of this pales in comparison to our biggest accomplishments: our kids.” Heather, born Jan. 21, 1982, passed away April 29, 1982. Megan lives in Kent, Wash., and teaches physical education in Belleview, Wash. James lives in Newcastle with his wife, Lexie, and is a high school science teacher. Trevor is a corrections officer in Englewood, Colo., and last, but not least, Sarah is a title clerk at CampCo Federal Credit Union in Gillette, Wyo., where she lives with her husband, Garrett.  

Kelly and Louise have supported the school district through hard work and donations for many years. They plan to continue this custom for many years to come. 


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