Obituary: Kay McGinnis
October 23, 1940 – September 9, 2021
Kay McGinnis (French) departed this life September 9th, 2021, at her home in Breckenridge, with her family by her side. Granddaughter of Colorado pioneers, she was born on October 23rd, 1940, in Colorado Springs and attended Colorado Springs High School (Palmer High). Kay earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority. She majored in Political Science and International Affairs and her studies included a life-changing year abroad at the Vienna Institute of European Studies. Following graduation, Kay and her sisters acquired a home on Main Street in Breckenridge in 1961 to enjoy the local skiing and never left. The house proved to be a historical treasure trove from which Kay later shared numerous archival photos with the Summit County Historical Society. Kay also became civically involved and helped spearhead the Summit Citizens Society whose mission was to preserve the environment and balance growth. Kay, along with Bob and her close friends were avid birdwatchers and participated in the annual bird count for the American Bird Association. True to form, Kay’s early work was instrumental in overseeing early developments for Breckenridge while working for Alpine Surveyors and Breckenridge Lands. She later entered the legal field where she worked for attorney Jay Bauer’s firm, followed by joining the initial team of the Summit County Housing Authority which brought affordable housing to the community. Over the years, she developed an affinity for bookkeeping and, at that capacity, supported many businesses including her daughter’s company. Kay was known as a classy, fun and loving lady. She enjoyed a party and appreciated the finer things in life including traveling the world, and was swept off her feet by first husband, Ray McGinnis – a jazz drummer and local surveyor whose trio charmed the Breckenridge aprés ski crowd during those early days. She later married a prominent and well-loved and respected local attorney and County Commissioner, Robert French, who survives her. She is also survived by her two sisters, Joan Cornell and Rita O’Dell and her children Dianne McGinnis, Erin McGinnis and Kelly McGinnis, and stepchildren Kevin McGinnis, Chris French, Hollis French, Elizabeth Roodberg, Molly Lee, and by seven grandchildren, Wyatt LaFrankie, Nash LaFrankie, Hattie LaFrankie, Andrew Karoly, Grace Karoly, Hailey Roodberg, Shea Roodberg, Christopher French and Will French. “All are welcome” to a celebration of her life on Saturday, September 18th – 11:00am at the family home, 220 N. Goldflake Terrace, Breckenridge, Colorado (a Covid-conscious garden gathering). In Lieu flowers, contributions can be made in Kay’s name to Ovarian Cancer Research (https://give.ocrahope.org/kays-fightforacure).
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