Mildred May Latchford, the mother of Durango resident Janet Hayward, died Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2013, at Vista Mesa Assisted Living in Cortez. She was 98.
Known as “Millie,” she was born June 19, 1914, to Jake and Lucy B. Fitting in Denver. She graduated from South High School in 1931 and attended the University of Denver.
Her daughter, Janet, said her mother was very adventurous. When she was 21, in the middle of the Depression, she and a friend drove to Mexico City and stayed there for a while.
Mrs. Latchford worked as a comptroller for Texaco and an administrative secretary with Coors Spectrochemical Labs, among other positions.
In October 1942, she married William K. Latchford in Stillwater, Okla. Their daughters were born in Denver, and the family moved to Westminster, where Mrs. Latchford was a Girl Scout leader for more than a decade. She would take her troop on two-week camping trips in the mountains.
The Latchfords moved to Cortez in 1985. Mrs. Latchford played in the Keen-age Kitchen Band, which performed at area nursing homes. She was also an active volunteer, continuing to play the piano and organ at church services and volunteering at the Methodist Thrift Shop and the Good Samaritan Center.
She was an accomplished pianist, and from the age of 12 was playing the piano for two churches in Denver. She continued to play the piano, organ and accordion throughout her life. She also loved ice skating and ballet and was a ballerina with the Colorado Ballet when she was young. Sewing, quilting, gardening, camping and fishing were also favorite pastimes.
She continued to be adventurous in her later years, taking a ride on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle for her 84th birthday.
Mrs. Latchford was preceded in death by her husband of 48 years, William Latchford; and grandson Chris Grotey.
She is survived by her daughters, Janet Hayward of Durango and Mary L. McKean of Cortez; three grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
A celebration of life of will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013, at Cortez First United Methodist Church, 515 N. Park St. The Revs. Tom Towns and Suzanne Listemann will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Hope’s Kitchen, c/o Cortez First United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 1016, Cortez, CO 81321; or Hospice of Montezuma, P.O. Drawer 740, Cortez, CO 81321.
To send condolences, visit www.ertelfuneralhome.com.