Colorado Funeral Directors Association

In Memory

  • Saturday, September 10, 2016 9:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    John J. Berg, 73, of Green Valley, AZ, formerly of Kimball, NE, died on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at Banner University Medical Center in Tucson. He served as President of the Colorado Funeral Directors Association in 1986.

    John was born on Sept 10, 1942 in Wilkinsburg, PA to Jacob and Helen (Fails) Berg. He attended school in Penn Hills PA and graduated from Penn Hills High School in 1960. He obtained a two year degree from Point Park Junior College in Pittsburgh and then graduated from Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science in 1965. He enlisted in the United States Navy and served as a corpman for the Marines in the Vietnam conflict. He and Carolyn Budz were married on May 4, 1968. They owned and operated the John Berg Funeral Home in Franklin, PA for 5 years. The family then moved to Trinidad, CO and in 1977 began working for the Allnutt Funeral Service in Greeley, CO and then in Kimball, NE. They retired to Green Valley, AZ. 

    John was a long-time member and Past President of the Colorado Funeral Directors Association and a member of the National Funeral Directors Association. He served in several different offices for both organizations. He was also a member of the Colorado Jaycees. He is a member of St. Francis in the Valley Episcopal Church in Green Valley. 

    He began his employment with the Allnutt Funeral family in 1977 and remained an active part of this family business for 38 years. He enjoyed taking an active part in the organizations that he belonged to and was active in his church activities. He was the ultimate funeral director and had a wonderful sense of humor. John enjoyed traveling, spending time with family and friends and the beauty and wildlife of the Arizona desert.

    He is survived by his wife, Carolyn of Green Valley; daughters, Jennifer Brownlee and fiancée Geoff Gaebe of Santee CA; Jessica (Andy) Laws of Gering, NE; sister, Jayne (Howard) Evans of Ft. Lauderdale, FL; brother, Philip Berg of Clintonville, PA; brother-in-law, Robert (Marion) Budz of Littleton, CO; sister-in-law, Pat (Tom) Bassetti of Sarver, PA and 5 grandchildren, Brandon, Kyla, Tabor, Annalee (Brandon) and Jerilyn. 

    Services for John will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Sept 22, 2016 at the Cantrell Funeral Home in Kimball. Reverend Christine Plantz will officiate. Visitation will be from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Wed., Sept. 21st at the funeral home. Burial will be in Kimball Cemetery. 

    In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to St. Francis in the Valley Episcopal Church, 600 S. La Canada Ave, Green Valley, AZ 85614, to the USO or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

    For more information, visit

  • Monday, May 09, 2016 8:29 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Betty Wolverton, age 77 of Hotchkiss, died May 4, 2016. She is the wife of CFDA Past President W. Art Wolverton (1990); mother of CFDA Past President Craig Wolverton (1996); and mother of Eric Wolverton, SCI Market Director, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

    Betty was born October 24, 1938 in Greeley, Colorado to Cecil G. and Ruth (Bull) Staver, the second of three children. As a child, she lived in Greeley and Brighton, Colorado, before her family settled in Fort Collins, CO. She attended Colorado State College of Education, now the University of Northern Colorado, where she received her degree in elementary education. While in college, she met W. Arthur Wolverton, and they married on December 29, 1960, in Fort Collins.

    Betty taught school in Portland, OR, Cheyenne, WY, Denver, CO, and for most of her career in Hotchkiss, CO. 

    Betty is survived by three children; son Craig (Julee) Wolverton of Montrose, CO, daughter Diane Wolverton of Thornton, CO, and son Eric (Tanya) Wolverton of Downingtown, PA. She has five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She is also survived by her brother, Dr. Robert A. Staver, of The Dalles, OR. She was preceded in death by her parents and one sister, Dorothy Hill, of Montrose.

    Betty was a member of the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church, the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority, P.E.O. Chapter DT, and an alumni of the Alpha Phi Sorority. 

    A funeral service will be held at the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church on Monday, May 9, 2016. Visitation will take place prior to the funeral beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the church, with the funeral to follow at 11:00 a.m. Burial will follow on Monday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. at the Cedaredge Cemetery, in Cedaredge, CO.

    Memorial contributions may be made to Beta Sigma Phi, c/o Margie Hollembeak, 11700 3300 Road, Hotchkiss, CO 81419 towards the scholarship fund, or to the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 576, Hotchkiss, CO 81419. Friends and family may leave their condolences at

  • Monday, May 09, 2016 6:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Mary Louise Corcoran Ashford, 67, of Scottsdale, AZ passed away on May 9. She is the wife of Arizona funeral director Joseph Ashford, CFSP, Messinger Pinnacle Peak Mortuary in Scottsdale.

    Mary was born in Rochester Minnesota on March 13, 1949 to the late Dr. Charles and Elizabeth Corcoran.  She was raised in Chicago.  Mary graduated from James Ward Thorne School of Nursing in 1971 and later obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from the University of St. Francis in Illinois.  Her career as a nurse spanned 45 years serving in Illinois, Florida, California, Colorado and for the past 26 years in Arizona, most recently for United Health Care. 

    Mary is survived by her loving husband of 45 years, Joe Ashford; daughter Lisa Ashford-Kilani (Ramsey) and son, Ryan; three grandsons, Alex, Charlie and Oliver Kilani of North Carolina; three sisters and six brothers; and numerous nieces and nephews.  

    A celebration of Mary’s life will be held at 6:00 P.M on Thursday, May 12th at Messinger Pinnacle Peak Mortuary, 8555 East Pinnacle Peak Road, Scottsdale, Arizona.  A memorial mass will be held at a later date at St. John Fisher in Chicago, IL; with entombment following at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside, IL.

    In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made in memory of Mary Ashford to a fund designated for endometrial cancer research, patient support and education.   Sharyn N. Lewin Foundation for Gynecologic Oncology Research, Inc.; 322 West 52nd Street; P.O Box 2303; New York, NY 10101-2303 (

  • Thursday, March 10, 2016 8:26 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Marvelle Hageman passed away on March 7, 2016. Marvelle and her husband, Bill, were owners of Hageman Mortuary Transport Co. for many years.

    Preceded in death by her husband, Bill.  Survived by her children - Daryl (Patty), David (Julie), Ronda (Mike) and Randy (Molly).  Grandchildren - Stephen (Sara), Sean (Danielle), Chris (Nicole), Tim, Jeff, Justin, Rose and Matthew.  Great grandchildren - Cylus and Avery.  Also survived by numerous foster children.

    Visitation, Sunday, March 13, 2016 from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm at Archdiocese of Denver Mortuary.

    Interment, Fort Logan National Cemetery, Monday, March 14, 2016 at 12:00 Noon, staging area A.

    In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Archdiocese of Denver Mortuary Baby Fund.

  • Wednesday, March 09, 2016 4:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Frank Trujillo, 88, of Arvada, Colorado, passed away peacefully Monday, March 7, 2016. He is the father of Leonard Trujillo, CFD-CET, Newcomer Family Funeral Home.

    Frank was born September 8, 1927 in Las Vegas, New Mexico, the son of the late Eduardo & Lucia (Arguello) Trujillo. Beloved husband of the late Florence "Flo" Trujillo. Father of Evangeline Cordova, Ervin F. Trujillo, Leonard J. Trujillo and the late Shirley Almeida. Grandfather of Darryl Whatley, Dale Whatley, Darren Whatley, Derek Cordova, Erica Trujillo and Taian (Peter Woo) Trujillo. Dear brother of Mary Montoya, Flora Apodaca, the late Teodorita Valverde, the late Arthur Trujillo, the late Aniceto "Chet" Trujillo, the late Leonora Lovato, and the late Eugenio "Gene" Trujillo. Also survived by special niece, Lorretta Trujillo, numerous other nieces and nephews, many other relatives and his grand-dog, "Daisy Marie". 

    The family would like to thank the wonderful and caring staff at Exempla Lutheran Hospice and Collier Hospice Center for taking such good care of our Dad in his final weeks and days. 

    Those who wish may make memorial gifts to Collier Hospice Center, 3210 Lutheran Parkway, Wheat Ridge, Colorado 80033, in memory of Frank Trujillo. 

    Visitation, with family present, Monday, March 14 from 6:00 PM until 8:00 PM at Newcomer Funeral Home, West Metro Chapel. Funeral Mass, Tuesday, March 15, 11:00 AM at Newcomer Funeral Home, West Metro Chapel, with Reverend Monsignor Raymond Jones, Celebrant. Entombment, Madonna Mausoleum, Mount Olivet Cemetery. 

    "Vaya Con Dios, Dad. We love you!"

    Click here to share a memory about Frank or leave a condolence message for the family.

  • Thursday, May 07, 2015 3:12 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Carmela Catherine (“Clara”) Cropis Licata, grandmother of Steffani Blackstock, CFDA executive director, died in Lee’s Summit, MO, on May 6, 2015. She was 95 years old.

    Clara was born June 16, 1919, in northeast Kansas City, the third of 7 children to Salvatore and Rose Bianchino Cropis. She attended the Jane Hayes Gates Institute finishing school. Her first job was working in the family-owned grocery store and she also worked at Brand & Puritz Coat Factory.

    She met her husband, Peter Philip Licata, at a friend’s wedding and they were married in 1939. Together they raised three children and the family moved to Raytown in 1951. 

    After the death of her husband in 1975, Clara went to work at Putsch’s Carousel at the Blue Ridge Mall. She was a familiar face at Putch’s for 10 years and never missed a day of work. She was also a member of the church choir and the Alter Society at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Raytown.

    Survivors include her daughter, Rosemary A. Freeman of Kansas City; grandchildren Steffani G. (Bill) Blackstock of Highlands Ranch, CO; Anne M. (George) Walsh of Westminster, CA; Melani A. Greenawalt of Lee’s Summit; Amy L. (Kevin) Root of Lee’s Summit; Aaron B. Kruse of South Dakota; and Alison M. (Dennis) Carroll of Lee’s Summit; and 10 great grandchildren. Surviving siblings include Victor Cropis and Josephine Mirabile, both of Kansas City, and many nieces and nephews.

    Clara was preceded in death by her husband, Peter; daughter, JoMarie A. Greenawalt; and son, Philip P. Licata.

    A funeral mass will be held Wednesday, May 13, followed by burial at Mount Olivet Cemetery, Kansas City. 

  • Friday, February 13, 2015 3:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Lucille Vessey-Wilkinson, 99, mother of Steve Vessey, CMSP, Vessey Funeral Service, Fort Collins, died at her home on Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2015. 

    Lucille was born February 18, 1915 in Bassett, NE to Arthur and Georgia Ritchie. She graduated from high school in Norfolk, NE and Yankton College in Yankton, SD. Her first job was teaching grade school in Wessington Springs, SD where she met C. Don Vessey. They were married on Christmas day, 1937 in Norfolk, NE. In 1946 the family moved to Colorado and to Ft. Collins in 1948 where Lucille taught school in Wellington and Fort Collins. 

    She was an accomplished china painter. At the age of 56, she attained her private pilots license and enjoyed flying the family airplane to Nebraska to see her parents. She was a member of St. Luke’s Episcopal church where she had served on the altar guild and director of the junior choir. She was also a member of the Eastern Star, past president of Chapter CO of PEO, and member of the National Porcelain Artist Guild. In 1984, she married Earl Wilkinson in Fort Collins. She was a very active and vivacious lady until last Friday when she was stricken by a massive stroke. 

    She is survived by her four sons, Charles (Jeri)Vessey of Wellington, Donald (Glenda)Vessey of Escondido, CA, Robert (Sherry) Vessey of Tumbling Shoals, AR, and Stephen (Debbie)Vessey of Ft. Collins, grandchildren Wil (Corey)Vessey of Yuma, AZ, Shelby Randle (Scott) of Garden City, KS, Bret (Heather)Vessey of San Diego, CA, Jill Vessey (Travis Kechter) of Colorado Springs, Chris (Jessica)Vessey of Hoover, AL, Ginger (Chad) Breaux of Daphne, AL, Ben (Susanna Coblentz)Vessey of San Antonio, TX, Dana (Jered)Watt of Houston, TX and 12 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, brother Gerald, sister Mary Jeanette, husband Charles Don Vessey and husband Earl Wilkinson. 

    A funeral service for Lucille will be held on Friday, Feb. 13, 2015 at 10 AM, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church followed by a reception and burial at Grandview Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Cottey College in care of Vessey Funeral Service. 

    Please leave a condolence for the family at

  • Monday, January 12, 2015 10:23 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Gerald L. “Jerry” Barbieri, father of Andrea Horan and father-in-law of John Horan, President and CEO at Horan & McConaty Funeral Service/Cremation, Aurora,died on January 8, 2015.

    Mr. Barbieri also is survived by his wife, Margery; son, John; grandchildren, Melyssa, Gabriella, Isabella, Laura, Sarah, John Luke, Katie and her husband Luke Densow of Wichmann-Fargo Funeral Homes; and great-grandchild, Nixie Rose.

    The Recitation of the Rosary will be held January 12 at 7:00 p.m. at the funeral home. The Funeral Mass will take place January 13 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Therese Catholic Church. Interment to follow at Ft. Logan National Cemetery in Denver. Memorial contributions may be made to Saint Therese Catholic School, 1200 Kenton Street, Aurora, CO 80010.

    Additional information and a place to leave condolences can be found at

  • Wednesday, January 07, 2015 10:15 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Robert L. Black, 87, longtime resident of Arvada and owner of Aspen Mortuaries, passed away January 3, 2015, peacefully at home with his family and close friends at his side.

    Bob was born in Gary, Indiana to Cletis and Margaret Black, September 27, 1927. He was raised on a farm with his two sisters and three brothers. He married Jean Ann Henry, the love of his life for 63 years, on May 6, 1950 in Valparaiso, Indiana. Jean preceded him in death on May 10, 2013. Bob provided tireless support during the years of Jean's declining health.

    Bob and Jean moved to Colorado with their first two children in 1955 where Bob started his career in banking. Attending night school for many years, Bob climbed the corporate ladder to become President at First National Bank and then owning his own bank.

    Bob was very active in sports and the community. He loved to play golf and participated in many charity tournaments. He played racquetball, tennis, skied, fished, hunted and took up scuba diving at an advanced age, much to the concern of Jean. He was involved with the Denver Athletic Club, Colorado Wildlife Federation, Shrine of St. Anne’s Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, Arvada Elks and the Arvada Garden Club. He loved to have a vegetable garden in which he would share is bounty with his family and close neighbors and a flower garden for Jean.

    After Bob retired, he and Jean did a lot of traveling and, with the help of his older brother Charlie, he researched the history of the surname Black and traced it to the Scottish McGregor Clan. The family actively participated in the Highland Scottish Festival held in Estes Park for several years.

    He is survived by his children; Ann Shirley (Lew), Debbie Kovash (Hal), Bob Black, Jr., Mike Black (Becky), Jeff Black, Bill Black (Frances), Kathy Strike (Greg), Kim M. Merr (Allan) and Karen Black. He has many grandchildren: Robin, Dee, John, Matt, Kate, Paul, Rob, Jamieson, Andrew, Jeremiah, Cody, Joshua, Lucille, Alicia, Abraham, Owen, Sarah and 12 Great Grandchildren.

    Rosary will be Thursday, January 8, 2015, 5:00 PM at Aspen Mortuary of Arvada Chapel, 6370 Union Street, Arvada, CO. Mass of Christian Burial Friday, January 9, 2015, 10:00 AM at Shrine of St. Anne’s Catholic Church, 7555 Grant Place, Arvada, CO. Private interment at Arvada Cemetery. Reception following service at the Arvada Elks, 5700 Yukon Street, Arvada, CO.

    Contributions in his memory to Collier Hospice 3210 Lutheran Parkway, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033 or Arvada Elks Ladies Auxiliary, 5700 Yukon Street, Arvada, CO 80002.

    View the full obituary online 

  • Tuesday, November 25, 2014 11:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Esther Eileen (Blevins) Durgin, wife of Ken Durgin, retired from Fairmount Cemetery and currently Secretary-Treasurer of the Colorado Association of Cemeteries,  passed away on November 12, 2014. 

    Esther was born to Jack and Marge Blevins in Reeds Spring, Missouri on December 11, 1946. She has 3 brothers and 2 sisters.

    She attended Central Bible College in Springfield, Missouri where she met her husband Ken Durgin. They were married on June 14, 1969. They lived in Massachusetts, New Jersey and moved to Colorado in 1976.

    She had three main loves – love of Jesus and his Word, love of her family, and love of gardening (which is where she was most of the time from spring to fall). Nine children were her legacy for sure. She imparted so much wisdom to them. She was practical, but lived with her life propelled by her love for the kingdom of God. Having nine grandchildren brought tremendous joy to her life.  She loved having them around her. She liked to play games with them as well as cuddle the babies.

    She was laid to rest at a family graveside in Fairmount Cemetery on November 17. A memorial service was held Tuesday, November 25, 2014 , 11:00 AM at Fairmount Mortuary Chapel, 430 South Quebec Street, Denver, CO.

Colorado Funeral Directors Association,  P O Box 631664, Highlands Ranch, CO 80163-1664 U.S.A. 

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software