John Brennan (11/16/2006)
Durango native John Brennan, 72, died at Four Corners Health Care Center on Sunday, Nov. 12, 2006. He had been under the care of Hospice of Mercy for lung cancer.
Mr. Brennan was born to Edward and Helen Brennan in Durango on Jan. 16, 1934. He graduated from Durango High School in 1951 and attended Fort Lewis College at the old Hesperus Campus and the University of Colorado.
He tended bar at the Diamond Belle Saloon when it first opened.
Mr. Brennan served in the Army, and was stationed in Germany, where he met and married Antje Schmidtke. The marriage later ended in divorce.
Mr. Brennan worked for the Bureau of Reclamation on the Navajo Dam project. He later moved to Chicago, returning to Durango in 1998. While in Chicago, he worked at a bookstore.
An avid reader and pool player, Mr. Brennan spent many hours at the Durango/La Plata Senior Center and he Elks Club practicing his skills.
"He was extremely articulate, read voraciously and read everything," his brother-in-law Marvin Conrad said. "I'm not sure if he ever had his IQ checked, but I know it was high."
Mr. Brennan is survived by his daughters Heidi Küerten of Hackenheim, Germany and Sonja Crawford of Wilmington, Ohio; brothers Michael Brennan and Charles Brennan, both of Durango, and Tom Brennan of Santa Fe; sister Catherine Conrad of Bayfield; and 15 nieces and nephews.
No services are planned at this time.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Friends of the Durango Public Library, 1188 East Second Ave., Durango, CO 81301; or the Hospice of Mercy, 375 E. Park Ave., Durango, CO 81301.
Sarah Taylor Jones (11/15/2006)
Longtime La Plata County resident Sarah Taylor Jones died of pancreatic cancer at her home in Durango on Monday, Nov. 13, 2006. She was 57.
She was born to Clem and Betty Taylor in Santa Barbara, Calif., on Sept. 24, 1949. Mrs. Jones grew up in Needles, Calif., where her parents were both teachers in the Needles public-school system.
Mrs. Jones attended the Ojai Valley School and Pomona College.
In the early 1970s, she married Steve Jones in Southern California. The marriage later ended in divorce.
She married Vic Lopez in May 2006 in Durango, after the couple had been together for seven years.
Mrs. Jones had moved to the area in 1976, and was a longtime resident of Bayfield and Durango. She was the office manager of the M&R Durango Insectary.
Mrs. Jones enjoyed singing with the Durango Choral Society and served on its board. The society dedicated its Sunday concert with the San Juan Symphony to her.
She also enjoyed music, reading, gardening, hiking and nature. Her family said she will be most remembered for her dedication to family and friends. They said she touched many people with her kindness and grace.
Mrs. Jones is survived by her husband, Vic Lopez, of Durango; children Ruth Jones of Denver, Clare Jones of Durango, Sam Lopez of Fort Collins and Sara Lopez of Boulder; brothers John Taylor of Los Lunas, N.M., and Tim Taylor of Rocklin, Calif.; and former husband, Steve Jones, of Durango.
A memorial celebration will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, 2006, at St. Mark's Episcopal Church.
A gathering will follow in the Parish Hall.
Memorial contributions may be made to her favorite charity, Heifer Project International, P.O. Box 8058, Little Rock, AR 72203 or at www.secure. heifer.org; or the American Cancer Society, 3801 N. Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301.
Eugene F. Luther (11/15/2006)
Durango native Eugene F. Luther died after a long battle with emphysema on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2006, in Bullhead, Ariz. He was 73.
Mr. Luther was born to Walter and Irene Luther in Durango on April 17, 1933. He grew up Durango.
Mr. Luther served in the Army, finishing boot camp just as the Korean War ended. He was a member of an artillery unit.
On Nov. 9, 1958, he married Linda Bingel in Silverton.
Mr. Luther worked in the mines for Standard Metals, working his way up to mine foreman before he resigned in 1970. After he resigned, Mr. Luther took over his father-in-law's propane business, Silverton LP Gas. He retired from the business around 1993, and his daughter and son-in-law have continued to run the family business.
After his second retirement, Mr. Luther spent winters in Lake Havasu, Ariz., and summers in Durango and Silverton.
He enjoyed fishing, which fueled his love of boating, his family said. They said that although he was well-traveled, he loved the mountains of Silverton most of all. Mr. Luther was also a handyman and good at repairing automobiles.
His family said he will be remembered as a quiet man, a good listener and a jack of all trades.
"He had time for anyone in need, and he really loved his grandkids," his family wrote.
Mr. Luther is survived by his wife, Linda Luther, of Silverton; sons Brian Luther of Venezuela and Darryl Luther of Silverton; daughter Cindi Jaramillo of Silverton; brother Jerry Luther of Durango; sister Margaret Standridge of Norman, Okla.; three grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
A funeral will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday Nov. 18, 2006, at The Word of Life Church in Silverton. The Rev. Jim Greenfield will officiate. Burial will follow at Hillside Cemetery in Silverton.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Silverton Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 115, Silverton, CO 81433; or the American Lung Association, 61 Broadway, New York City, NY 10006.
Edgar Leroy Law (11/14/2006)
Longtime Cortez resident Edgar Leroy Law died at the Valley Inn Nursing Home in Mancos on Friday, Nov. 10, 2006. He was 89.
Mr. Law was born to Claude Emerson and Dora Bell (Carpenter) Law in Denver on Jan. 21, 1917.
On Aug. 13, 1938, he married Lucy Ellen Ault in Denver.
Mr. Law served in the Army during World War II. After his discharge, the government awarded him and many other servicemen land in Alaska to homestead. The Law family said they spent many happy years there.
His family said Mr. Law was a talented, hard-working man who could construct about anything with his hands.
They said he excelled in the building of cabins and carving red cedar and marble. Mr. Law built the family home in Montana himself.
The Law family said he was a devoted member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
"Above all, he was a loving and tender man who put his family first," his family wrote.
Mr. Law is survived by his wife of 68 years, Lucy Law, of Cortez; children Steve Law and Merry Freestone of Cortez, Linda Brady of Kanab, Utah, Darlene Bawden of White Rock, N.M., and Dennis Law of Union, Ore.; 30 grandchildren; and 43 great-grandchildren.
A funeral will be held at 10 a.m. today, Nov. 14, 2006, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Empire Chapel in Cortez.
Burial will follow at the Cortez Cemetery. Bishop Adam Black will officiate. Military honors will be provided by the Ute Mountain American Legion Post No. 75.
Dorothy K. Sharpe (11/11/2006)
Former Durango resident Dorothy K. Sharpe, died in Dallas on Sunday, Oct. 15, 2006. She was 82.
Known as "Dot," she was born to Beatrice and Fount Kelly in Greenville, Texas, on June 25, 1924. She graduated early from Polytechnic High School in Fort Worth, Texas.
In 1960, she married Lt. Col. George M. Sharpe, and she continued to teach piano and play in the local symphony orchestra.
When Mr. Sharpe retired, the family moved to Dallas.
Mrs. Sharpe graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington and Southern Methodist University Law School. She practiced family and pro-bono law in Dallas until 1996, when she lost her eyesight.
From 1989 to 1990, Mrs. Sharpe served as the Supreme President of the International Order of Does, which is affiliated with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks.
She is survived by her son Charles M. Daniels of Dallas; daughter Deborah Pelzmann of Durango; stepdaughter Nancy Duncan of Dallas; stepson John Sharpe of Bedford, Texas; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Mrs. Sharpe was preceded in death by her husband, George M. Sharpe and her daughter Leslidawn Clark.
A funeral was held on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2006, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Farmers Branch, Texas.
Memorial contributions may be made to Texas Scottish Rite Children's Hospital, 2222 Welborn St., Dallas, TX 75219; or the Durango Elk's Lodge, 901 East Second Ave., Durango, CO 81301.
Daniel Richard Decker (11/10/2006)
Bayfield resident Daniel Richard Decker died at his home on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2006. He was 60.
Mr. Decker was born to Thomas and Kathleen Decker in Great Lakes, Ill., on May 22, 1946. He grew up in Barrington, Ill., and attended Barrington High School.
Mr. Decker worked for several years as a cook out in the field for the Forest Service in Missoula, Mont. He attended three colleges and eventually earned his master's degree in forestry.
After having cooked his way though college, Mr. Decker developed a passion for the restaurant business.
He owned several restaurants in Illinois. In the early 1980s, he moved to Durango with Bob Thorne and opened Cat Balou's.
Mr. Decker moved back to Bayfield in September. He was working on his doctorate.
His family said he attended the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally for several years and was an avid Harley-Davidson rider.
He was a member of several Harley riders clubs and a board member of American Bikers Advocating Training and Education.
Mr. Decker had a pilot's license and his scuba certification.
Mr. Decker is survived by his father, Thomas Decker of Carlsbad, Calif.; sisters Patricia Dressel of Durango, Pamela Decker of Wickenburg, Ariz., and Stephanie Decker of Shanghai, China; and brother Bryan Decker of Oceanside, Calif.
Cremation will occur. A memorial service will be held at noon Saturday, Nov. 11, 2006, at Pine River Cemetery. The Rev. Joe Brown will officiate.
After the service, friends are invited to gather at the home of Patricia Dressel, 75 Misty Mountain Drive, in Durango. Please call Dressel at 259-0420 for directions.
Timothy John Snode (11/10/2006)
Mancos resident Timothy John Snode died at Monument Valley High School on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2006. He was 56.
He taught music in Monument Valley in Kayenta, Ariz., at the middle school and high school levels.
Mr. Snode was born to Donald and LaRilla Snode in Alliance, Ohio, on May 2, 1950. He was raised in Alliance and attended Kent State University. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in music from Colorado State University in Fort Collins and spent his career teaching music in the public schools.
On May 8, 1982, Mr. Snode married Enid Hoffman in Denver.
Mr. Snode is survived by his wife, Enid M. (Hoffman) Snode of Mancos; mother LaRilla Snode; sister Laurel Snode; brother Larry Snode; identical twin brother Thom Snode; and four nieces.
No services are planned at this time.