Jean Hood Knorr dies at the age of 83
Jean Hood Knorr was born July 31, 1924 in Longmont, to Estella Oleta Smith and Ernest John Hertzke. Jean’s mother married Walter J. Hood in 1930 and then she was known as Jean Hood. She went home to be with the Lord in the late afternoon hours of Dec. 11, 2007 at her home in Fort Collins. She was 83.The oldest of four sisters, Jean grew up primarily in Boulder, graduating from Boulder High School in 1944 after leaving school for a time during the war to work at Remington Arms making bullets and driving a car pool vehicle to the plant in Denver. In the summer of 1945 she earned a teaching certificate from Colorado University.Growing up during the depression years, she worked in many capacities. She made Christmas wreaths and sold them door-to-door from their old wagon, worked as a cook in a restaurant owned by an aunt and worked with her dad painting, hanging wallpaper, doing odd jobs and helping him mechanic.Jean played clarinet in the marching bands in both junior high and high school, held first chair in the high school orchestra, was accomplished on the accordion and whistled songs in school talent contests.In 1945 Jean took a teaching job in Heeney where she taught first through eights grades in the one-room Lakeside School. It was in the community of Heeney that Jean began to cross paths with a handsome rancher named Karl Knorr. They were married on June 13, 1948, honeymooned in Yellowstone and Jackson Hole and returned to make their home on the ranch. A daughter, Karen was born in 1950. They moved into the home that Jean and Karl had built in the spring of 1952, and daughter Helen arrived in April of 1953. Jean worked hard on the ranch with Karl, irrigating, fencing, moving cattle, branding, putting up hay and caring for newborn calves.She also was a wonderful homemaker and cooked not only for her family, but also for the ranch hands. As one of Jean’s nieces who worked for them recalls, “By the time Uncle Karl and I were done eating breakfast, dinner for the hay crew was in the making and it was the best meal of the day.” Much of the time, Jean delivered hot meals to in what she called “the chuck wagon.” This was the back of her jeep or travel-all, packed with boxes of hot foods, dishes and lots of iced tea and hot coffee.Jean did lots of the planning and cooking for old-time neighborhood dances, 4-H Banquets, Bull Sales, Turkey Shoots and many other community functions. For many years, she and Karl held an annual summer fundraising barbecue at the ranch for the Safari Club. She also served local and larger community as a member of the Blue Valley Home Demonstration Club, Middle Park Cowbells, Colorado Cowbells, Blue Valley Sportsman’s Club, Safari Club International and as a long-time 4-H Leader in Middle Park.During her childhood years, Jean, working alongside her mother and grandma, gained a great love for and understanding of growing both vegetables and flowers. After marrying, she grew a large vegetable garden and canned or froze food to be used all through the winter. She also had a beautiful yard and loved her outdoor flowerbeds, her indoor houseplants and her greenhouse. One of the strengths of Jean and Karl’s long and loving marriage was their many shared hobbies and interests. Of these, Jean’s favorite hobby (her “special” time) was fishing, which she did in the mountain streams, by boat in the local lake and in far-flung places such as Mexico, the Pacific Ocean, Canada and Alaska. Two prize catches came of this, a 55-inch Alaskan King Salmon and a 6-foot Blue Marlin. She began her pursuit of hunting as a half-grown kid, helping her grandpa secure the winter meat supply. This interest carried right on through to hunting with Karl locally and joining him on safaris to Alaska and Africa.In addition, Jean loved corresponding with family and friends, traveling, picnicking, camping, cookouts, berry picking, bird feeding, reading, cross-country skiing, bowling, baseball and driving.On one of her travels to Alaska, Jean had the special blessing of meeting her half brother John Stevens and his wife Linda. That relationship remained very dear to her heart.Jean had a quick wit and a good sense of humor. Even the caregivers in her last few weeks said this was part of what they loved about her.Throughout all of Jean’s life, she loved and cared selflessly for her family and friends. She loved all of nature and it’s inherent beauty. She had a special place in her heart for little children. She would just light up when all the generations of little ones rolled through her life. Most of all, Jean loved God. She had a quiet, strong relationship with God, in all places and at all times. She would always say, “Just trust in the Lord.” Her husband Karl of 59 years, who passed away just five weeks earlier, preceded Jean in death. She is survived by daughters Karen and her husband Efton Foster of Fort Collins, and Helen Keim of Silverthorne; six grandchildren and two step-grandchildren: Dodie Lang and April (Jesse) Myers all of Fort Collins, Ace (Rachel) Keim of Anchorage, Ala., Karl Keim of Fairbanks, Ala., Anna (Richard) Mayhew of Hill Air Force Base, Utah, Jediah (Crystal) Foster of Loveland, Mike Foster of Thornton, Sabrina (Jared) Anderson of Colorado Springs; and 14 great-grandchildren: Venessa, Devin, Naomi, Karina, Caleb, Charity, Benjamin, Johanna, Ian, Austin, Chloe, Savanna, Blaine and Trey.Jean is also survived by three sisters; Leona (Bill) O’Halloran of Fort Collins, Ernestine (Frank) Burch of Jamestown, Ruth Edmondson of Niwot, Colo.; and one brother; John (Linda) Stevens of Anchor Point, Ala. Many nieces, nephews and cousins also survive Jean, along with their families and countless friends. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Children’s Diabetic Foundation, 777 Grant Street, Denver, CO 80203.Memorial services will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 17, at The Chapel of Peace, Crown Hill Mortuary and Cemetery, in Wheatridge.Honorary pallbearers are Bill O’Halloran, Frank Burch, John Stevens, Ace Keim, Karl Keim and Jediah Foster.
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