About Town – December 27, 2021
“Joy to the World the Savior has been born.”
Christmas Eve has always been one of the most important days of the church year to me. When we were growing up, our family always attended a service in Lamar, and often in Ordway or Las Animas depending on where more of the family members would be attending. The only year that I was not able to attend a Christmas Eve service was in 1949 when I was a polio patient in St. Mary’s Hospital in Pueblo. However, that night a band of trumpet and singers sang out in the halls. It was so wonderful that I have always remembered that music that sounded like my idea of “heavenly music.” Since the 1980’s, we have liked attending Christmas Eve service in the Haswell United Methodist church so much because I can see many of my family members, and so many people who come to worship there on that night. It is gratifying to see how many former residents return to Haswell on that evening. The Lay Pastor, Pamela (PJ) Lessenden, arranged a meaningful service that included parishners taking part in the worship service. Pam’s message was outstanding! Blake and Kodie (Hasz) Stoker had the honor of lighting the Advent Wreath candles, and Donald Oswald and Greg Miller assisted with the offering and gift bags. Mary Shafer read the Gospel lesson from Luke 2:1-14. For five decades or more, Rosemary Stoker played the piano for the hymn singing, but the Lord took her to Heaven. Thus, Pamela Lessenden, who understands this new technology, played recordings for carols sung by popular country western singers so people could sing along by singing from the hymn book. It was wonderful! I think the people sang with more gusto and confidence. I liked that method! Another highlight was holding lit candles while singing “Silent Night.” It was so heart-touching for me to see so many former students, such precious families, and people from other states. My niece, Marisa Dixon, brought a young lady from Canada who attends the University of Nebraska in Kearney where Marisa works.
It seems that as one grows older, that family becomes even more important to a person. Dwight and Tearle Lessenden were in Pueblo West with Eli and Celena Clark’s family to celebrate Eve’s 13th birthday on Christmas Eve. Next we celebrate little Elkle’s fourth birthday.
It was so good to be invited to the Weisbrod residents’ Christmas party last week where Amanda Spalding, the new Activity Director, was glad to have her family help with the party. After opening gifts, the nursing staff and Amanda’s daughters helped carry plates of party foods to each guest. Ken Grant brought his little four-year-old daughter, Charlie Grace, who willingly hugged and greeted the elder folk. On Christmas Eve, the residents opened their red Santa stockings for which the Hospital Auxiliary supplied the money for Amanda to fill them.
December 19, one of my nieces rushed in my house to be sure I was going to the café to hear the governor. Then she clarified that Danielle Neuschwanger of Elbert was campaigning in southeast Colorado, and was coming from a photo shoot in Brandon to visit with folk at JJ’s Restaurant in Eads. Danielle is a Republican who is running for Governor of Colorado. It was a pleasant surprise to see that when people saw the lights on in the café, they poured in to eat and visit. There was a good turnout of folk to hear this vibrant, bold, lovely, well educated young mother of two little boys. Her rancher husband was with her, and supports her stand on a united rural America with God first and family. Any topic we asked about, Danielle gave a quick clear answer.
Juana Ramos’ children and grandchildren went to Denver last weekend to take part in and celebrate the marriage of Juana’s eldest daughter, Dr. Delma Ramos, to Victor Fan. Delma is a professor at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro.
Julie (Nordquist) Zimmerman is still in a Colorado Springs hospital. She has been in an induced coma to try to heal her lungs and body. Our hearts hurt for this dear young mother and her husband, Michael, and little ones, Landon and Marley.
Robin Musgrave and I decided to dine in Brew Unto Others in Lamar and were warmly greeted by Heather (Frederick) Ramsey, who works there for “fun.” She is the daughter of Darryl Frederick, who lives around the corner from me.
Several families from Eads have taken the Santa Train adventure up the Royal Gorge Canyon near Canon City. I saw some photos and heard wonderful descriptions of the foods, and Santa Claus walked through each train car to talk each child about his or her want list. Santa also gave them a gift. Some of the families went to the dinosaur museum and park, which sounds awesome too. What a delightful way to make memories for children!
The graveside service and burial for Jimmy Bendorf of Eads was Monday, December 27. It was followed by a reception at the senior citizen center in Eads. Jimmy’s three daughters, Terri, Trudy, and Linda, were there with their families.
The funeral service for Gloria Peck will be Saturday, January 15 at 10:00 a.m. at the United Methodist Church.
Happy New Year to you, Dear Readers.