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November 16, 1939 - February 20, 2017
November 16, 1939- February 20, 2017
Lester “Ray” Wilson, age 77, passed away on Monday, February 20,2017 in the comforts of his home in Montrose, Colorado. Ray was born November 16,1939 to Lester V. and Grace Lillian ( Armitage) Wilson, in the home of his grandparents Robert and Nellie Armitage. It is noted, in a note with his birth announcement to his Aunt that “he has long black thick hair…but I think he’ll have brown eyes” Ray did have black thick hair, but his eyes were stunning blue.
Ray lived at the Armitage Homestead-East of Cimarron in his early years. In the summer of 1946 his parents bought a farm and ranch East of Montrose. This is the place Ray made his home. Ray attended Rim Rock School House, the old Johnson School as well as Montrose Jr. High and High School.
In 1961 Ray married Frances Angell. Together they had 4 children. They later divorced. He then met his companion of 30+plus years, Marlys Mills.
About 1971, Ray started Montrose Lawn Care to help supplement income with his custom farming. Montrose Lawn Care grew and later became Wilson Landscaping. He employed many friends and family. This included his son, Zane. Both Wilson boys had an eye for landscaping and made a great pair. As it turned out, they both learned from each other. Together they enjoyed working on landscaping the Last Dollar Ranch, Sleeping Indian Ranch, and Centennial Ranch.
His hobbies included attending Denver Bronco games, camping, riding horses, fishing and hunting. His main hobby that kept him busy was his cow/calf operation. And, of course, driving the country side, reminiscing “back in the day”, especially with his son, Zane.
He will be remembered by many family and friends as being a prankster. Always having a cup of coffee in his hand. He lived his life to the fullest doing what he loved to do most, visiting with people, getting to know them and their families’. Stopping by with his thermos’s to have a cup of coffee or to have his many dear friends stop in at the house to have a cup of coffee with him and Maryls.
Ray is survived by, his companion of 30+years, Marlys Mills. 4 children, Karen (Tom) Deyke, Plattsmouth NE. Sandra (JJ) Heyer, Victoria MN. S.Zane Wilson, Denver CO. Shawna (Larry) Wall, Broomfield CO. Along with Marlys’s children, Greg (Marla) Larson, Gunnison CO. Marla (Joey) Manganello, Montrose CO, Randy (Chris) Larson, Grand Junction CO. Garyn (Kristi) Iverson, Montrose CO; One sister, Dorothy (Jerry) Denison, Cimarron CO; He enjoyed his 16 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Ray is preceded in death by his parents Lester and Grace Wilson. Siblings, Virgil Wilson, USAF Veteran, Cleo Fraser, Kenneth Wilson, Ruth Rossiter, and Ruby Cowan. Grandson, Tanner Manganello and Great granddaughter Hayden Rae Whitener.
There will be a Celebration of Life on Monday, February 27, 2017 from 3:00 to 7:00pm at Turn of the Century Saloon. 121 North West 4th Montrose CO. Memorial contributions can be made to Crippin Funeral Home, 802 E. Main St., Montrose, Co. 81401 to plant a tree in Ray’s name. Crippin Funeral Home & Crematory in Montrose is assisting the family.