Miscellaneous LaPlata County, Colorado Obituaries

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Vena B. Morlan
A memorial service will be 10 a.m. Thursday at St. Columba Catholic Church for Vena B. Morlan, who died Saturday, Nov. 28, 1998, in Mesa, Ariz., of heart failure. She was 90.
The Rev. Michael McCleary will officiate.

Judy Bustos Raulston
Services were held Dec. 1 at the Wood Family Funeral Service Chapel in Tehachapi, Calif., for Judy Bustos Raulston, who died of cancer Thursday, Nov. 26, 1998, in Bakersfield, Calif. She was 68. 
Interment was at the Tehachapi Public Cemetery in Tehachapi, Calif. Mrs. Raulston was born in Crested Butte, Colo. She was a longtime resident of Durango and a graduate of Durango High School. 
Mrs. Raulston moved to Tehachapi in 1959. She was employed as a waitress at Kelcy’s Restaurant before retiring.
Survivors include her husband, Lonnie Raulston of Tehachapi, Calif.; son, Chuck Raulston of Bakersfield, Calif.; daughters, Janell Slattery of Tehachapi, Calif., and Shalona Pendley of Bakersfield, Calif.; mother, Stella Bustos of Huntington Beach, Calif.; six grandchildren; four sisters and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations may be made to the American Cancer Society or the American Lung Association of Kern County. The cause of death was not available.

James Bowen Morton
Memorial services will be 3 p.m. Friday at the Fort Lewis College Chapel for James Bowen Morton, who died Friday, Dec. 4, 1998, in Durango. He was 63. 
Mr. Morton was born April 25, 1935, in Denver. He was a resident of Pagosa Springs.
He was a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps. Mr. Morton was employed as an owner-manager.
Survivors include his daughter, Lynne Gomez of Ignacio; son, John Robert Morton of Durango; sister, Mary Jane Summers of Denver, Colo.; and two grandchildren. The cause of death was not available.

Stuart H. Buehling
Stuart H. Buehling, a longtime U.S. Forest Service employee, died Monday, Nov. 23, 1998, at the Central Washington Hospital of Wenatchee, Wash., due to complications from thyroid cancer. He was 80.
The body was cremated.
Mr. Buehling was born May 11, 1918, in Chicago. He married Phyllis R.. Miller on July 24, 1943, in Spokane, Wash.
Mr. Buehling worked 34 years for the Forest Service. He and his family moved to Pagosa Springs in 1957 and to Durango a couple years later. In Durango he worked in timber management for the Forest Service and stayed until 1967. He retired in 1972. 
Survivors include his wife, Phyllis Buehling of Wenatchee; a son, Bruce Buehling of Durango; and a daughter, Dianne Beeson of Wenatchee. 
He was preceded in death by a brother, Norman, and a sister, Margaret.

Ruth Smith
Graveside services will be 2 p.m. Thursday at Greenmount Cemetery for Ruth Smith, who died Saturday, Nov. 28, 1998, in Durango. She was 80.
The Rev. Dan Straw will officiate. 
Mrs. Smith was born Sept. 14, 1918, in Belle Fourche, S.D. She married W. Frank Smith Aug. 7, 1940, in Deadwood, S.D.
Mrs. Smith lived in Durango for the past 16 years. She previously lived in Phoenix, Ariz., for 25 years. 
Mrs. Smith was employed as a medical transcriptionist. She worked on genealogy for 40 years and enjoyed studying Native American history.
Survivors include husband, W. Frank Smith of Durango; daughter, Linda Willmett of Durango; one grandson, three step-granddaughters and one step-grandson.

Earl V. Biss Jr.
Earl V. Biss Jr., an internationally renowned artist and master oil painter, died of a stroke Sunday, Oct. 18, 1998 in Santa Fe, N.M. He was 51.
Mr. Biss was born Sept. 29, 1947, in Renton, Wash., and was taken six days later to the Crow Nation in Montana, where he was raised by his grandmother. He attended the Institute of American Indian Arts from 1965 to 1966 and later studied at the San Francisco Art Institute from 1966 to 1972. He continued his artistic training in Europe and South America. He lived in Durango in 1971.
Survivors include his ex-wife, Dana Ivers of Bayfield; two half-brothers and adopted son, Benji Bulltail.
Memorial donations may be made to the Earl Biss Memorial Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 1830, Aspen, CO 81612 for a school for Crow Indian artists on the reservation.

Margaret P. Watson
Private services will be held for Margaret P. Watson, who died Wednesday, Nov. 25, 1998, at Hearthstone of Sun City, Ariz. She was 82.
Mrs. Watson was born in Durango. She was a homemaker. She moved from Arizona to Colorado in 1974.
Survivors include her husband, William Watson of Sun City, Ariz.; son, Jim C. Watson of Roseville, Calif.; four grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Mary Lou Toburen
Funeral services will be 2 p.m. Saturday at Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses for Mary Lou Toburen, who died Wednesday, Nov. 25, 1998, in Durango. She was 70.
Kevin Karle will officiate at services. The body will be cremated at Hood Mortuary Crematory in Durango.
Ms. Toburen was born May 14, 1928, in Baxter Springs, Kan., and moved to Kansas City in 1946 and Durango in 1978. She married Dale Toburen, now deceased, in 1948.
Ms. Toburen worked as a full-time volunteer teaching the Bible and did educational work for Jehovah’s Witnesses. She and her husband operated Top Notch Cleaning in Durango for 13 years.
She is survived by two sons, Steve Toburen of Dominican Republic and Tim Toburen of Jacksonville, Fla.; a daughter, Becky Wanstrath of Durango; two brothers, Mark Edens and Curt Edens of Baxter Springs, Kan.; a sister, Pamela Edens Lamm of Dallas; stepmother Garaldine Edens Smith of Baxter Springs, Kan; and seven grandchildren.
The cause of death was not available.

Van D. Holdman
Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Wednesday at Greemount Cemetery for Van D. Holdman, who died Wednesday, Nov. 18, 1998, in Durango. He was 75.
Chaplain Myron Darmour will officiate at graveside services.
Mr. Holdman was born June 16, 1923, in Rose, Ill. He is a Navy veteran and worked for John Morris for 40 years in the farming and dairy business.
He is survived by a daughter, Jo Ellen Dickson of Hesperus.
The cause of death was not available.

Jamey Lephart
A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church for Jamey Lephart, who died in an automobile accident Tuesday, Nov. 24, 1998, near Durango. He was 22.
The Revs. Andrew Cooley and Curt Alderton will officiate.
Mr. Lephart was born Oct. 27, 1976, in Denver and moved to Durango in 1978. He attended New Horizons Preschool, Florida Mesa Elementary School, New Life Academy Christian School and Durango High School. He received his GED from the Adult Education Center in Durango. 
He was a member of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church and active in the youth group. He worked in the family business, Durango Transfer Moving & Storage, and was an Atlas Van Lines qualified driver.
He is survived by parents Ron and Jeanie Lephart of Durango; a sister, Kelly Lephart of Durango; two brothers, Russ Lephart and Brandon Lephart of Alexandria, Va.; grandparents Pat and John Wright of Albuquerque; and two uncles, Doug Brady of Durango and Tim Brady of Kenton, Tenn.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that donations be made to Youth Ministries, c/o St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 910 East Third Ave., Durango, CO 81301.

Lois L. Meador
Nov. 14, 1998
Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Webb and Rodrick Funeral Home in Elk City, Kan. for Lois L. Meador who died Saturday, Nov. 14, 1998, at Terrace Nursing Home. She was 88.
The Rev. Gerald Manley will officiate at services. 
Burial will be at Oak Hill Cemetery.
Mrs. Meador was born Ms. Lois Johnson February 10, 1910, in Colorado Springs, before moving to Durango at an early age. In 1976 she moved to Elk City to be near family after retiring from thirty-five years of teaching in Durango. In 1987, the Kansas Developmental Disabilities Council recognized her as the Kansas Volunteer of the Year. She came back to Durango in 1993 to live in the Terrace Nursing Home.
Mrs. Meador was a member of the Christian Church in Elk City.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Charles Meador in May 1968.
Survivors include a son, Frank Meador of Ava, Mo.; a daughter; Myrna Couch of Elk City; a brother; John LaLonde of Durango; two sisters, Arlene Zink of Durango and Ethel Pringle of Big Spring, Texas; fifteen grandchildren, twenty-eight great-grandchildren, and five great-great-grandchildren.
Memorial donations may be made to Elk City Memorial Church.
The cause of death was not available. 

Mabel L. Rowse
Nov. 10, 1998
Services will be 2 p.m. Saturday at Hood Mortuary Chapel for Mabel L. Rowse, who died Tuesday, Nov. 10, 1998, in Durango. She was 63.
The Rev. Vernon Hollett will officiate. Burial will be at Ignacio Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday at Hood Mortuary.
Mrs. Rowse was born Jan. 30, 1935, in Ventura, Calif. She moved to this area in 1959.
Mrs. Rowse was a homemaker. She also helped run Bob and Bill’s Trading Post for five years. 
Mrs. Rowse lived in Bondad for the past 30 years.
She was preceded in death by her husband, William Elmer Rowse.
Survivors include her son, William R. Rowse of Durango; daughter, Cynthia Kinslow of Durango; brothers, Albert Seidenkranz of Los Alamos, N.M., and Bob Seidenkranz and Ernie Seidenkranz, both of Ojai, Calif.; and four grandchildren.
The cause of death was not available.

Mallory Ryan Gonzales
Nov. 8, 1998
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. Columba Catholic Church for Mallory Ryan Gonzales, who died Sunday, Nov. 8, 1998, near Walsenburg, Colo., from injuries suffered in a car accident. She was 11.
The Rev. Mike McCleary will officiate. Burial will be at Greenmount Cemetery. Rosary service will be 5:30 p.m. Friday at the church.
Mallory was born March 15, 1987, in Durango and was a lifelong resident of Durango. She was a sixth-grade student at Escalante Middle School. She had previously attended St. Columba School.
Mallory played the saxophone. She was a member of the Durango Shredders, a traveling soccer team. She was part of the Ballet Colores Latinos Dance Troupe.
Mallory loved horses, time with her family, and was always smiling.
She was preceded in death by her father, Michael John Gonzales, in July of this year.
Survivors include her mother and stepfather, Sharalyn "Shari" and Jeff Titus of Durango; sister, Whitney Gonzales of Durango; stepbrother and stepsister, Scott and Stephanie Titus of Durango; grandparents, Robbie Humble of Casper, Wyo., Rod and Linda Humble of Durango, Fidel and Edna Gonzales of Durango and Steve and Margaret Titus of Durango; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.
A memorial fund has been established in Mallory’s memory at Burns National Bank.

Ramona Becerra Garibay
Nov. 8, 1998
Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Thursday at La Junta Catholic Church for Ramona Garibay, a former Bayfield middle school teacher, who died Sunday, Nov. 8, 1998, near Walsenburg from a car accident. She was 43.
Father Thomas Hinni, CM, will officiate at services. A vigil will be at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the La Junta Catholic Church. Burial will be at Calvary Cemetery in La Junta following the funeral Mass.
Mrs. Garibay was born Ramona Becerra Aug. 31, 1955, in La Junta, before moving to Durango in 1993. She married Guillermo Garibay in 1984 at Colorado Springs.
Mrs. Garibay attended school in La Junta and graduated from La Junta High School in 1973. She attended the University of Colorado at Boulder before transferring to the University of Northern Colorado where she earned her bachelor of arts degree and her masters degree in language and archaeology. Mrs. Garibay went on to work in retail, as a teacher, and also as a court interpreter in Colorado Springs. After moving to Durango in 1993, she was director of the Ballet Colores Latino dance group. The group entertained at universities and various events.
She is survived by her husband, Guillermo, of Durango; three sons, Nicholas Bangan of Garland, Texas, Marcos Garibay and Armando Garibay of Durango.

William ‘Bill’ Franklin Brown
Nov. 7, 1998
Memorial services are pending for William "Bill" Franklin Brown, who died Saturday, Nov. 7, 1998, from injuries suffered in a car accident on U.S. Highway 160 west of Hesperus. He was 58.
Mr. Brown was born Dec. 27, 1939, in Canton, Ill. He relocated to Albuquerque, N.M., many years ago, which he considered home.
Mr. Brown became a member of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 953, in Albuquerque. He served his local as an operator and union steward for more than 20 years. 
His area of expertise was in the oil and gas pipeline industry. He was working with Sheehan Pipeline Construction Co. on Spread 4 of the TransColorado gas pipeline project in southern Colorado.
Mr. Brown had served as a paralegal in New Mexico. He was a former U.S. Marine, bird watcher, outdoorsman and avid reader.

Troy Olen Triplett
Nov. 4, 1998
Services will be 1 p.m. Monday at the La Plata County Fairgrounds arena for Troy Olen Triplett, who died Wednesday, Nov. 4, 1998, at his home in Hesperus. He was 54.
Chaplain Myron Darmour will officiate. Burial will be at Redmesa Cemetery.
Mr. Triplett was born March 23, 1944, in Walla Walla, Wash. His family moved to the Four Corners area when he was a young boy. He attended schools in Bayfield, Ignacio and Farmington. He served in the U.S. Army and was stationed in Germany. 
Mr. Triplett married Dale W. Penwell Aug. 29, 1970, in Durango.
Mr. Triplett was a rodeo cowboy for 28 years, riding saddle bronc and bulls. Since the early 1970s, he has coached high school rodeo clubs in which he had an impact on many young people.
Mr. Triplett managed the La Plata County Fairgrounds from 1974 to 1975. He was also a farrier, shoeing horses for many people in the area.
He received the Western Heritage Service Award in August.
Survivors include his wife, Dale Triplett of Hesperus; daughters, Tara Triplett of Las Cruces, N.M., and Lacey Triplett and Dawn Triplett, both of Hesperus; parents, Olen and Jennie Lee Triplett of Farmington, N.M.; brother, Duane Triplett of Waterflow, N.M.; sister, Jean Bixler of Farmington, N.M.; and one grandson.
Memorial donations may be made to the Troy Triplett Memorial Rodeo Scholarship Fund, c/o First National Bank, P.O. Drawer L, Durango, CO 81302.
The cause of death was not available.


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