Lena Marie Huguenin Holderness


Longtime Hayden resident Lena Marie Huguenin Holderness died Aug. 11, 2005, at her home. She was 96.

Marie was born in Hayden on March 21, 1909, the second daughter of Stella Lazarus Huguenin and L.C. "Shorty" Huguenin.

Marie spent her childhood at Elkhead, where her family homesteaded and where she attended the Elkhead school. They then moved to Mount Harris, where Shorty was a carpenter and Stella ran the boarding house. The family then moved to Hayden, where Marie graduated from Hayden High School in 1926. She attended Aggies College, now Colorado State University, for two years.

On June 2, 1928, she married Fred Holderness. To this union, four children were born; Dotty, Gerry, Ward and Carolyn.

In 1938, Fred filed on a homestead southwest of Hayden and purchased a part of the old Cary Ranch, which Marie continued to manage after Fred's death in 1979.

Marie was well-known for her entries at the Routt County Fairs and for always winning the champion and grand champion ribbons. She made afghans for all her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. From age 92 and with failing eyesight, she knit blocks, which Carolyn sewed together, and made another five afghans. She always had a large garden at the ranch, where she canned vegetables for the coming year.

She belonged to the garden club, civic club, was a member of Rebekahs, tops, Congregational Church, sang in the church choir, worked with Women's Fellowship, sewed most of her clothing, loved to play bridge and was very active in Ala-non and AA.

In her 60s, she took a nurse-aide course and worked at The Memorial Hospital in Craig, a job she truly loved.

Having learned to play the violin and piano from Joe Scuber, she instilled in her children the love of music. Even when her eyesight began to fail and she no longer could read or watch TV, she would listen to her CDs for hours. She also had a passion for cooking, and many relatives and friends stopped by for good, home-cooked meals. Upon the death of her daughter, Gerry, in 1983, she joined the Mission of Grace, where she was baptized.

During the past four years of her life, she resided at home with caregiver Norrita Karels.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Fred; her daughters, Dotty Docker and Gerry Hitchens; son, Ward; and grandson, Dean Hitchens.

She is survived by her daughter, Carolyn Montieth; 10 grandchildren; 26 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandson; and her loving caregiver, Norrita Karels, who made it possible for her to enjoy the last journey of her life.

Marie always said that even in the hard times, life was good. It truly was for her 96 years.

Memorial donations can be given to The Haven Senior Assisted Living Center, 300 South Shelton Lane, Hayden, CO 81639.


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