James Louis Houghton (9/26/2006)
Former Durango resident James Louis Houghton, 50, died in Avondale on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2006. The cause of death was a heart attack.
Mr. Houghton was born to George and Marilyn Houghton in Pueblo on May 19, 1956. He grew up in Walsenburg and Rye. He graduated from Lamar High School and attended Lamar Community College.
Mr. Houghton married Jeannine Gibson in Denver on Feb. 5, 1983.
The couple moved to Durango later that year and ran Engine Creek Outfitters.
The marriage later ended in divorce. Mr. Houghton left the area in 1996.
Most recently, he had managed a ranch in Avondale, just east of Pueblo.
His family said he had a big heart and loved his children immensely.
He was an avid horseman, an animal lover and a skilled carpenter.
He is survived by his son, Chase Houghton of Fort Collins; daughters Alyse Houghton of Loveland and Tori Houghton of Avondale and Loveland; mother, Marilyn Dewell of Colorado Springs; father and stepmother, George Houghton and Rose Scott of Truth or Consequences, N.M.; brothers Scott Houghton of Colorado Springs and Randall Houghton of Big Lake, Ark.; sister Lisa Scott of Durango; stepsisters Joselyn Dewell, Robin Dewell and Tammy Dewell, all of Colorado Springs; stepbrother Jeff Dewell, also of Colorado Springs; four nephews; four nieces; and one great-nephew.
Mr. Houghton was preceded in death by his infant daughter, Kayla Jeannine Houghton.
A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2006, at the Avondale Community Center, 402 2nd St.
Condolences may be sent c/o Alyse and Tori Houghton, 2735 Breckenridge Place, Loveland, CO 80538.
Jeffrey Lynn Frisbie (9/22/2006)
Durango resident Jeffrey Lynn Frisbie died in Durango on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2006, after a brief illness with cancer. He was 49.
For 12 years, Mr. Frisbie had been a faculty academic librarian and associate professor at John F. Reed Library at Fort Lewis College.
He was born to Neil and Carol Frisbie in St. Johns, Mich., on May 7, 1957. He earned a Bachelor of Science in biology from Northern Michigan University.
Mr. Frisbie taught high school science classes in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Richford, Vt., for two years each. Mr. Frisbie lived in Tucson, Ariz., for 10 years, where he developed an interest in commercial horticulture.
He returned to graduate school to earn a Master of Library Science at the University of Arizona in Tucson.
"Jeff will be remembered by all as a man of kindness and compassion, with an infectious, distinctive laugh," his family said.
Mr. Frisbie is survived by his life partner of more than 21 years, Michael McPherson of Durango; parents Neil and Carol Frisbie of Rose City, Mich.; sisters Cindy Frisbie of Baraga, Mich., Christy Lange of Chelsea, Mich., and Cathy Macheske of Tawas City, Mich.; brother Mike Frisbie of Williston, Vt.; and numerous nieces and nephews.
A memorial service and remembrance is being planned for a later date at Fort Lewis College.
Donations in Mr. Frisbie's name may be made payable to the FLC Foundation for the Jeffrey Lynn Frisbie Memorial Book Fund at John F. Reed Library, Fort Lewis College, 1000 E. Rim Drive, Durango, CO 81301; or to the Hospice of Mercy, 3801 N. Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301.
Philadelphio Joe Montoya (9/22/2006)
Longtime area resident Philadelphio Joe Montoya, 85, died at his home in Allison on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2006. The cause of death was multiple myeloma cancer.
Mr. Montoya was born to Emigran and Sophia (Valdez) Montoya in Governador, N.M., on Feb. 16, 1921. He was one of 16 children and was raised in Governador and the Rosa area as well as in Allison. (The town of Rosa was submerged beneath Navajo Lake.)
Mr. Montoya was a sheepherder in his younger years, starting at the age of 12.
At the age of 19, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, where he was assigned to the artillery. He was a veteran of World War II, having served in the European Theater for five years. At the time of his honorable discharge, Mr. Montoya had the rank of private first class. He continued to serve in the reserves for an additional four years and also worked for the Civilian Conservation Corps.
On Oct. 29, 1960, he married Viola Lucero.
Mr. Montoya then began a 15-year career with the U.S. Forest Service. He did a lot of the archaeological work - digging up ancestral Puebloan artifacts on the site of Navajo Lake before it was filled.
Mr. Montoya enjoyed music, dancing and playing many musical instruments, including the guitar, violin, trumpet and banjo. He also liked to garden, fish and camp.
"He was caring, loving and giving," his son Phillip Montoya said. "He was a compassionate man and a religious man."
Mr. Montoya is survived by his wife of 46 years, Viola Montoya of Allison; sons Phillip Montoya of Allison and Isaac Montoya of Wilmot, Wis.; sisters Edalia Gomez of Pagosa Springs, Ernestine Kittle of Denver and Rose Penticoff of Aztec; brothers Paul Montoya of Aztec, Nan Montoya of Lovington, N.M., and Elias Montoya of North Hollywood, Calif.; five grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
A rosary will be recited at 6 p.m. today, Sept. 22, 2006, at St. Ignatius Catholic Church in Ignacio. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, 2006, also at St. Ignatius. Burial will take place in Rosa Cemetery in Arboles.
Marcos Louis Acosta (9/21/2006)
Durango resident Marcos Louis Acosta, 56, died in Durango on Sunday, Sept. 3, 2006. The cause of death was complications from diabetes and liver disease.
Mr. Acosta was born in Phoenix on June 4, 1950, and was raised by Luis and Helen Akcosta. His father was an officer in the Air Force, so he was well traveled by the time he graduated from high school in Medical Lake, Wash. When he was 18, his parents moved to Europe.
Mr. Acosta worked as a carpenter in various places throughout the West, from the shipyards of San Francisco through Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico. The job he was most proud of was smoke jumping for the Forest Service in Idaho. Mr. Acosta worked out of the McCall Smokejumper Base from 1979 to 1987.
After a divorce, he and his only child moved from Idaho, eventually settling in Durango. He had worked as a carpenter here for the past 15 years.
His daughter, Ramona Acosta, said her father's greatest passions were endless remodels and improvements on his home in Durango West as well as cultivating his numerous trees. She said he was extremely proud of both.
"His favorite phrase was 'Endeavor to persevere,'" she said. "And that's who he was."
Mr. Acosta is survived by his daughter, Ramona Acosta, of Durango; girlfriend, Kelly McCullough, of Durango; and one grandson.
A private family service has been held.
Lena Gallegos (Garcia) Copeland (9/20/2006)
Former Durango resident Lena Gallegos (Garcia) Copeland died in Santa Fe on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2006.
She lived in Durango from 1939 to 1948.
She was preceded in death by her first husband, Leo Garcia; and her stepdaughter Frances Copeland-Stevens.
Mrs. Copeland is survived by her husband, Roy Copeland of Santa Fe.; her children Dr. Helen M. Garcia of Redlands, Calif., Robert Garcia of Las Cruces, N.M., and Michael Garcia of Santa Fe; stepchildren David Copeland and Kay Copeland-Davis; sisters Isabel Garduno of Vacaville, Calif., Mary Helen Hill of Duluth, Minn., and Esther Olguin of Northglenn; three grandchildren; four stepgrandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
James Casey (9/19/2006)
Former Durango resident James Casey, 71, died at his home in Aztec on Friday, Sept. 15, 2006. The cause of death was a heart attack.
Mr. Casey was born in Denver to Jim and Anna Casey on Aug. 11, 1935. When he was 3 days old, his family moved to Durango.
Mr. Casey graduated from Durango High School in 1953. While in high school, he played football, baseball and basketball.
He studied at Fort Lewis College, where he also played basketball. In 1993, he was inducted into the FLC Athletic Hall of Fame because the 1953-54 team, on which he played, was the first FLC team to make it to a national tournament. In this case, it was the National Junior College Athletic Association Tournament.
Mr. Casey completed his studies at Adams State College in Alamosa. He started his professional life teaching math and science at Aztec High School, where he also coached basketball.
Mr. Casey worked for Rust Tractor as regional manager for 17 years. He then purchased Four-Way Inc., a pipeline contractor, and served as its president for 18 years.
On Oct. 1, 1983, he married Audrey Blanks in Farmington.
After he retired, Mr. Casey spent free time with his family and friends and enjoyed golfing, fishing and traveling.
His family wrote, "Casey had a love for life, and he has left a big void in everyone's life, but we know that he is no longer suffering. Thank you, 'Casey', for all the wonderful times and memories."
Mr. Casey is survived by his wife, Audrey Casey, of Aztec; son, John Casey of Durango; daughter, Joni Casey of Farmington; stepchildren G.G. Scultz of Marietta, Ga., and Michael Waldroop of Las Vegas; sisters Pat Boglino of Westminster and Virginia Mayer of Tempe, Ariz.; and one granddaughter.
A memorial service will be held at 4 p.m. today, Sept. 19, 2006, at Cope Memorial Chapel, 405 S. Main Ave., in Aztec. Judge Tom Hynes and Aztec High School Vice-Principal Richard Hill will officiate.
Cremation has occurred, and a private burial will take place at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Mr. Casey's memory to the General Fund at Aztec High School, 500 East Chaco St., Aztec, N.M. 87410.
The funds will be used to create a scholarship or other lasting memorial to Mr. Casey.
Teresa Mary Hahnenberg (9/19/2006)
English-born Teresa Mary Hahnenberg, 83, died at Pine Ridge Extended Care Center in Pagosa Springs on Friday, Sept. 15, 2006. The cause of death was chronic obstructive-pulmonary disease.
Mrs. Hahnenberg was born to Arthur and Beatrice Smith in Syston, England, on Jan. 7, 1923.
On April 21, 1945, she married James Joseph Hahnenberg in Barrow, England. An only child and war bride, she immigrated to the United States to meet her husband in the late 1940s, bringing her newborn son with her. Soon after, Mrs. Hahnenberg obtained American citizenship.
Known as "Teri," she worked as a legal secretary and later at the Grand Rapids Press.
In 1996, she moved to Lakewood and her family said she had loved Colorado ever since.
After the move, she told her daughter, "I haven't been this happy since I was a girl in England."
Mrs. Hahnenberg moved to Durango in 2004 to be closer to her daughter Lori Sofer.
Her family said she was an avid and dedicated volunteer and had a passion for reading. While living in Grand Rapids, she was a member of the Peer Pressure Players, which worked with young people to help deal with social pressures. Mrs. Hahnenberg made jewelry and plastic-canvas creations.
She enjoyed going on cruises.
She is survived by her daughters Pat Palmer of Grand Rapids, Mich., Denise Myaard of Raleigh, N.C., and Lori Sofer of Pagosa Springs; son Blair Hahnenberg of Wyoming, Mich.; seven grandchildren; and numerous great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Hahnenberg was preceded in death by her husband, James Joseph Hahnenberg, and her son Adrian Hahnenberg.
Visitation will begin at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2006, at Hood Mortuary, and services will follow at 6:30 p.m. The Rev. Gerry Mulder will officiate.
Graveside services will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, 2006, at Mt. Calvary Cemetery in Grand Rapids, Mich.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Durango/La Plata Senior Center, 2424 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301; or to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, 424 East 92nd St., New York City, NY 10128.