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December 22, 1931 - April 9, 2023
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Daniel R. Morgan
Daniel Ralph Morgan was born in Nucla, Colorado on December 22, 1931 to Frank L. and Mary E. (Ainsworth) Morgan. He was raised on Second Park and talked most about the good and simple life they lived there and the adventures he and his best friend, Vernon Impson, had when they were teenagers. It’s amazing that those two were neither killed or jailed during those years…
Daniel met Jacqueline J. Montgomery when her family moved to Naturita for her dad’s mining job and she started school in Nucla. Daniel said that the first time he saw Jackie walking across the street, he turned to Vernon and said, “I’m going to marry that girl.” And he did. They were married on June 1, 1952 in Nucla and lived on the Second Park ranch in the winter, and were sheep herders on the Little Cone mountain place during the summer.
Daniel was drafted into the army in 1955 during the Korean conflict and was a Communication Center Specialist stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia. Daniel was less than thrilled when he was drafted into the army, but was very proud to be a Veteran in his later years. Jackie and their two children, Valerie and Mark, eventually joined him at Fort Benning and lived in base housing until Daniel’s discharge in 1957 when they moved back to Nucla. They lived in Nucla until 1961 when they moved and bought Daniel’s Aunt Grace Wagner’s ranch south of Norwood.
Daniel and Jackie raised their family and farmed the ranch and raised cattle until the late 1970s when Daniel also went to work for the Norwood Sawmill and then William’s Construction. They sold the ranch and moved to Redvale in 1984. Daniel then farmed his Redvale farm and worked for his good friend, Mario Zadra, for the next 25 years until he lost his sight to Macular Degeneration. He often said working for Mario was his ideal job – he could do what he loved to do (farm) and not have to worry about the money (or lack thereof) part of farming.
Daniel’s lifelong love was farming and ranching, visiting with friends and family, reading and attending the Sheepdog Trials in Meeker, Colorado every fall. He attended the Trials for 34 years and was a dog sponsor for the last 15 years. He especially enjoyed visiting with the dog handlers and sheep people that attended.
After he lost his sight, Daniel continued to read listening to the books sent by the Colorado Talking Book Library until his death on April 9, 2023. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Frank and sister Gracie, his wife of 61 years, Jackie, and five of his children – Valerie, Mark, Katrina, Morene and Joe. He is survived by his daughters, Twyla (Jay D.) Jensen and Danie Hewlett, and his son, Thomas, 16 grandchildren, and 24 great-grandchildren. He will be missed.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Daniel’s name to the Colorado Talking Book Library which provides free books and publications at no charge to sight impaired and blind Coloradoans. Crippin Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.