Paula Nell Schaefer
A memorial service has been arranged for Paula Nell Schaefer, who died Saturday, Oct. 11, 2003, at her home in Durango.
The service will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Durango Community Recreation Center.
Mary Elizabeth Edwards
Mary Elizabeth Edwards, of Lakewood, died of natural causes at her home on Sept. 23, 2003. She was 88.
Mrs. Edwards was born on Jan. 31, 1915, in Boise, Idaho, the daughter of Alta Gooding and Daniel Sidney Smith, of Shoshone, Idaho. She graduated from Shoshone High School in 1933, attended the College of Idaho and graduated from Scripps College in Claremont, Calif., in 1937. She married Page L. Edwards, a mining geologist from Los Angeles, in 1939 in Shoshone.
Mrs. Edwards and her family lived in Durango from 1952 until 1975, when they moved to Lakewood. She received a master of science degree in arts and biology from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1984.
"Mom did so many neat things with us," said daughter Judy McClanahan. "We are blessed to have her in our lives."
Mrs. Edwards was an honorary lifetime member of the Native Plants Society and was associated with the Herbarium at the Botanical Gardens in Denver for more than 20 years. In 1992, she revised and edited the ninth edition ofMeet the Natives,a field guide to Rocky Mountain Wild Flowers. She was instrumental in developing an herbarium and plant inventory at Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument and contributed to plant inventories for Chimney Rock National Monument and Rocky Mountain National Park. She also loved to hike, camp and fish.
She was preceded in death by her son, Page L. Edwards Jr.
She is survived by her husband; a sister, Virginia Faisant of Los Altos, Calif.; three daughters, Ann Phillips of Boulder; Judy McClanahan of Kansas City, Mo., and Sally Loo of Littleton; eight grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Family services will be private. Donations in Mrs. Edwards’ memory may be sent to the Native Plants Society, P.O. Box 200, Fort Collins, CO 80522.
Wayne Hall Alexander
Wayne Hall Alexander, who lived in Durango for 86 years, died Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2003, at Four Corners Health Care Center in Durango. Mr. Alexander, who was 95, died of natural causes, his family said.
He was born on April 20, 1907, in Clay Center, Kan., the son of Robert and Emma (Crooks) Alexander. When he was 9, the family moved to Durango. He grew up in the Animas Valley and the first job he held was as an ice-cream maker at the Hollywood Dairy in Durango.
He then worked as a molder for Telluride Iron Works until 1964. After that, he was employed with the state of Colorado as a mechanic until his retirement in the mid-1970s.
Mr. Alexander enjoyed fishing, listening to baseball games and reading history. He practiced yoga long before it became popular. He loved the mountains and enjoyed driving through them during the autumn to see the changing colors of the leaves.
"We tried to get him to move to California but he wouldn’t leave his mountains or Durango," said Mr. Alexander’s daughter, Margaret Wilkins.
He was a member of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church and a lifetime member of the Oddfellows Lodge.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Clora (Mayn) Alexander.
He is survived by his second wife, Kathryn (Wamsley) Alexander of Farmington; his daughter, Margaret Wilkins of San Jose, Calif.; his sister, Viola Kees of Durango; his stepdaughter, Janet Nelson of Aztec; two grandchildren; one great-grandson; one step-granddaughter; and many nieces and nephews.
A graveside service will take place at Greenmount Cemetery at 1 p.m. Friday and a reception at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church will follow.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 910 East Third Ave., Durango 81301 or to a charity of choice.
The Rev. Robert D. Blanpied
The Rev. Robert D. Blanpied, 80, who served as hospital chaplain at Mercy Medical Center from 1979 to 1993, died on Sunday, Oct. 5, 2003, in Ogden, Utah. He died of natural causes, said his friend, Diana Hanebrink.
The Rev. Blanpied was born on Jan. 16, 1923, in Leavenworth, Kan., the son of Kathryn (Johnstone) Blanpied and Kenneth M. Blanpied.
He attended St. John’s Military Academy and Kenrick Seminary and was ordained a Roman Catholic priest for the Diocese of Wichita, Kan., on April 6, 1948.
In 1969, he moved to the Diocese of Pueblo and in 1979 to Durango. In 1998, he was feted on his retirement from St. Columba Catholic Church for his 50 years in the priesthood.
He is survived by cousins and many friends.
"He was a delight," his friend Diana Hanebrink said. "He was always joking. Always looking on the bright side of things. But that’s how I saw him. I’m sure the people in the hospital saw his compassion and strength and help in their time of need."
"We knew Bob as a wonderful cook, a gifted painter, a compassionate and dear friend. We will miss him very much," said Bev Darmour, who also spoke for her husband, the Rev. Mike Darmour. The Rev. Darmour served as a Mercy Medical Center chaplain with the Rev. Blanpeid, and the two men started the tradition of a community Thanksgiving dinner, which serves hundreds of people every year.
A memorial mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Friday at St. Columba Catholic Church, where the Rev. Blanpied served.
The Rev. Blanpied acknowledged sexually abusing a boy in the 1960s when he was a priest in Wichita, Kan., according to stories inThe Wichita Eagle. Wendell E. Gravley filed a $5 million lawsuit against Blanpied and the Catholic Diocese of Wichita. Gravley’s lawsuit was found to have exceeded a statute of limitations.
Dorothy Agnes Fick-Cox
Dorothy Agnes Fick-Cox, 84, who once lived in Durango, died on Saturday, Oct. 11, 2003, in Cheyenne Wells. The cause of death was not disclosed.
Mrs. Fick-Cox was born on Dec. 18, 1919, in Kit Carson. She trained as a teacher and earned a master's degree in literature and art at Adams State College in Alamosa. She taught in Kit Carson and married Gerald Russell Cox there on Jan. 15,1949.
The family moved to Ignacio where Mrs. Fick-Cox taught third grade. Her love of poetry was later expressed in the volumeSunshine and Shadows,which she wrote and published in August 2003.
"She was greatly loved, and will be missed by family and friends," said her granddaughter, Wilandra Price-Cordova.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald Russell Cox.
Mrs. Fick-Cox is survived by her foster son, Willard Price Sr.; her grandchildren, Wilinda Goodtracks, Ronald Price and Wilandra Price-Cordova, all of Ignacio, Willard Price Jr. of Towoac and Toby Price of Rapid City, S.D.; her sister, Mary Louise Dechant of Kit Carson; 20 great-grandchildren; her niece and seven nephews; and her great-grandnephews and nieces.
A rosary will be said at 7 p.m. today at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Kit Carson. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Wednesday, again at St. Augustine.
Wilbur Wayne Brewer
Wilbur Wayne Brewer, who worked atThe Durango Heraldfor nearly all of his working life, died on Thursday, Oct. 9, 2003, at the Good Samaritan Center in Aztec. He died at the age of 83 of a stroke and heart attack, his family said.
Mr. Brewer was born Dec. 30, 1919, in Durango, the son of Hallie (Horn) Brewer and Tillman Brewer. He graduated from Durango High School in 1937 and married Dorothy Koon on June 8, 1939, in Durango.
The Brewers lived in Cedar Hill, N.M., from 1975 to 1998, then moved to Aztec.
"Wayne started at theHeraldas a paperboy when he was very young. Almost all of his career was there. He spent a few years at the post office in Durango but went back to theHeraldand retired on Sept. 18, 1981, as a linotype operator," said Mr. Brewer's daughter-in-law, Joan Brewer.
He is survived by Dorothy Brewer of Aztec, his wife of 64 years; his children, Carolyn Torske of Aztec, Wayne Brewer of Nampa, Idaho, Don Brewer of Phoenix and Gary Brewer of Mason, Mich.; 10 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-granddaughter.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Bible Missionary Church of Durango, 756 Florida Rd.
John Harrison Simon
John Harrison Simon, a past commander of the American Legion in Durango, died on Friday, Sept. 26, 2003, at the Mountain Meadows Nursing Home in Monte Vista. He died at the age of 79 of natural causes, his family said.
Mr. Simon was born on Nov. 4, 1923, in Mitchell, S.D., the son of Vannie and John T. Simon.
He was a World War II veteran who served in the U.S. Army Air Corps in the South Pacific.
Mr. Simon was preceded in death by his son, Larry Simon.
He is survived by his sons, John Simon of Dallas and Ernest Simon of Livermore, Iowa; his sisters, Joan Hereim of Montrose and Mary Lou Dalluge of Frazee, Minn.; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
Mr. Simon was buried in the Valley View Cemetery, Graettinger, Iowa. Memorial services are pending.
Victoria ‘Vicki’ Leah Garcia
Victoria "Vicki" Leah Garcia, 78, died on Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2003, at Mercy Medical Center. The cause of death was not disclosed.
Mrs. Garcia was born in Arriola on May 16, 1925, the daughter of Ferminia and Miguel Valdez.
She married George G. Garcia in Durango and spent many years as a homemaker. Later in her life, she worked for Redfield Optic.
Mrs. Garcia enjoyed reading – especially the Bible – exercise and spending time with her family.
She was preceded in death by her husband.
She is survived by her children: Rita Garcia, George L. Garcia, and Lisa Whetten, all of Durango, and Michael M. Garcia of Auburn, Calif.; her sister, Rose Trujillo of Farmington; her brother, Mike Valdez of Torrence, Calif.; her seven grandchildren, her great-granddaughter and many nieces and nephews.
The rosary will be said at 6 p.m. Sunday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Monday, also at Sacred Heart. The Rev. Joseph Gallegos will officiate. Burial will take place at Greenmont Cemetery after the Mass.
Memorial contributions may be sent to Hospice of Mercy, 3801 Main Ave., Durango CO 81301.
Eugene Mario 'Gene' Mapelli
Eugene Mario "Gene" Mapelli, 77, who once lived in Durango, died in Palm Springs, Fla., on Saturday, Oct. 4, 2003. He died after an extended illness, his family said.
He was born on Nov. 6, 1925, in Denver, the son of Della (Borrelli) Mapelli and Herman Mapelli, who had immigrated from Italy.
Cindy Mapelli, a daughter-in-law of Mr. Mapelli, characterized his family as "devout Catholics and hard workers."
Mr. Mapelli and his brothers started Mapelli Brothers in Denver during the 1920s.
He opened his own company in Denver in 1951, then merged with Monfort of Colorado in 1968.
He left Monfort in 1977 and opened Mapelli Meat Company in Las Vegas with his wife, Velda King Mapelli, and in Palm Springs in 1983 with his son, Geno Mapelli, and his daughter, Stephanie Dee Mapelli.
The Mapellis retired to Durango in 1994, but left to re-enter the meat business with Mapelli Meat Company in Pueblo in 1997. Mr. Mapelli's passion for golf persuaded him to retire a second time, this time to Palm Springs, Calif.
"Gene loved playing golf, especially with his grandson, P.J.," Cindy Mapelli said. "He was passionate about business and always said that, in business, timing was everything. So we have to believe that even in death his timing was perfect no matter how much we will miss him."
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Velda King Mapelli of Palm Springs; his children: Eugene Mario "Geno" Mapelli II of Durango, and his daughter, Stephanie Dee Mapelli of Seattle; his grandchildren: P.J. Mapelli of Durango, and Melissa Lynn Beuchat of Las Vegas.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Denver at Crown Hill Tower of Memories Chapel, followed by a gathering of friends at the restaurant, Kate's at 35th Avenue, 3435 Albion, in Denver
Virginia K. Young
Virginia K. Young, 94 a Durango native and the third generation of her family to own Schluter Floral Company died Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2003, at her home in Durango. She died of natural causes, her family said.
Mrs. Young was born November 15, 1908, in Durango, the daughter of Marie (Burch) Klahn and August Klahn. She married W. Herbert Young on May 2, 1926, in Durango.
Mrs. Young was the former owner and partner of Schluter Greenhouses, north of Durango, Schluter Floral Company on East Second Avenue and Young Company, a rental-property company.
In 1939, Mrs. Young and her husband took over the companies, which had been owned by her parents and grandparents. They led them until 1978. Her granddaughter, Mary Jeanne Brittain, now manages the companies.
She was preceded in death by her husband, W. Herbert Young in 1985, and her daughters, Marilyn Krul and Shirley Jean Butler.
Mrs. Young is survived by her son, William H. Young Jr. of Durango; her sister, Jeri Frandsen of Grand Junction; her grandchildren, Elizabeth Sawyer of Glendale, Ariz., Mary Jeanne Brittain of Durango, Robert Butler of Phoenix, Bill Butler of Gallup, N.M., Carol Frazer of Salt Lake City; her six great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
Graveside services will be at 1 p.m. Saturday at Greenmount Cemetery, where cremains will be buried.
The Rev. James Koenigsfeld, with St. Columba Catholic Church, will officiate. Cremation will be at Hood Mortuary Crematory.