Billie Kleckner Richardson
February 8, 1927 - July 18, 2013
Billie K. Richardson was born on February 8, 1927, to Galen L. and Gladys Dawson Kleckner in Trinidad, Colorado. Her great-grandfather, John Barkley Dawson was an early rancher in the Hayden, Colorado area. As a child, Billie lived in Trinidad, Hawaii, Hayden, Riverton, Wyoming and Durango, before settling in Fort Collins. In 1948, she married Everett V. Richardson who she met on a blind date while attending Colorado A&M (Colorado State University), while working on her Bachelor's Degree in Home Economics. Everett is a professor emeritus at CSU and over the course of his career he traveled throughout the world, often taking Billie with him. She traveled to Egypt, Singapore, Venezuela, and Malaysia, to mention a few places. Egyptian friends made sure she visited the Suez Canal, Abu Simbel as well as the Aswan High Dam. In retirement Billie and Everett continued to travel with an almost annual trip to Hawaii.
Billie was active in the CSU Women’s Association, helping with the CSU blood drives (she was usually the one to pick up the orange drink).
At the age of 81 Billie became a glass artist exhibiting in several galleries. She usually rejected the idea that her creations were anything much, after all she just used scraps to create her clocks, jewelry, buttons (“Billie Buttons”) and wall hangings. Her humility and gentle nature often hid her unassuming wit and humor.
Her greatest joy was her family. She and Everett delighted in taking grandkids on trips whether it was to Florida to view a shuttle launch, or Washington, D.C. In the last six months of her life she cared for Everett as he dealt with cancer. She is survived by her husband of 65 years, Everett, her daughter Gail Frick (husband Dave) of Fort Collins, son Dr. Tom Richardson (wife Barbara) of Spokane, Washington, and son Dr. Jerry Richardson (wife Beth) of Overland Park, Kansas. She was very proud of all her grandchildren: Don Frick (Kim), Anna Frick (Dustin Boyd), Dr. Erin Lane (Jeff), Sara Richardson, Molly Richardson, Hillary Bird (Dan), and Cassie Baird (Bo). In the last few months as she dealt with the effects of her cancer, she especially enjoyed visits from her great-grandson Owen Frick—he lifted her spirits.
Billie’s family would like to acknowledge the special care and support they have received from Pathway’s Hospice and Visiting Angel’s caregivers, especially Barb, Wanda, Amanda, Rose and Maria.
A memorial service will be planned for a later time. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that a donation be made to a scholarship which has been set up at Fort Lewis College. Donations should be made to the “Hesperus Girls +1 Scholarship” at Fort Lewis College (1000 Rim Drive, Durango, Colorado). This scholarship was set up to honor the nearly 70 years of friendship of 5 girls from the Durango, Colorado, and Aztec, New Mexico, area who attended the early Fort Lewis College on the old Hesperus campus.