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James L. Penasa

July 11, 1932 - May 7, 2018

U.S. Veteran

Burial Date: May 10, 2018

A Memorial Service & celebration of Jim’s life will be held on Thursday, May 10, 2018 at 11:00 A.M. at Zion Lutheran Church on Junction Street, in Montrose with Inurnment and Military Honors to follow the service at Grand View Cemetery, west of Montrose.

James L. Penasa
July 11, 1932 ~ May 7, 2018
James L. Penasa, Lifelong Coloradoan, long time Montrose resident, Veteran and longtime active Member of Zion Lutheran Church, passed away on May 7, 2018 at his home.
Jim was born to Italian immigrant parents Serafino and Mary Penasa in Rico, Colorado. Jim attended grade school at the one room school in Ophir and in Telluride. The family then moved to a farm west of Montrose where Jim graduated from Montrose High School with the close knit class of 1950. Jim served seven years with the military; three years with a National Guard Infantry Company and then with the Navy, serving four years aboard submarines during the Korean Conflict. After his stint with the military, he became employed as a west-end uranium miner and as fate would have it-he married the boss’ daughter! He and Marie had 57 wonderful years together.
Jim became a Colorado State Trooper, serving in various areas of the state for thirty-two years as field trooper and supervisor. Being the first trooper assigned to Ouray County, he assisted then sheriff, Bud Scott in forming the first Sherriff Posse; in later years serving as posse captain, he and Marie were recognized as Grand Marshals of the 1997 Ouray County Fair and Rodeo. Jim was the last of the original posse group. Jim served two years on the city’s Montrose Improvement Team, dealing with various issues facing the city council. Being a life-long Coloradoan, Jim was a member of the NRA; avid outdoorsman and especially loved jeeping and 4-wheeling in Colorado and Utah. He was also a life time member of the Montrose ELKS, DAV, and VFW. Jim and Marie did some rv-ing in their early retirement years, traveling to various states with a group of friends. One notable trip was made through Canada and Alaska with childhood friend Don Topliss and wife JoAnn of Grand Junction.
Jim was preceded in death in death by his parents, wife Marie, five brothers, one sister, one daughter, one grandson, and two great-grandsons. Survivors include one son, Gino (Amy) of Seattle, WA; daughters Rose Oversole (Lonnie) of Nathrop, CO and Coleen Haigler (Ray) of Helper, UT; seven grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild, nieces and nephews; one brother, Albert Penasa of Cortez.
A Memorial Service & celebration of Jim’s life will be held on Thursday, May 10, 2018 at 11:00 A.M. at Zion Lutheran Church on Junction Street, in Montrose with Inurnment and Military Honors to follow the service at Grand View Cemetery, west of Montrose. Crippin Funeral Home & Crematory in Montrose is assisting the family.