Dean P. Hedges |

Dean P. Hedges

Dean Hedges, 80, of Rifle, passed away May 11, 2008, at E. Dene Moore Care Center from complications of Parkinson’s Disease.

He was born Feb. 14, 1928, in Chase County, Neb., to Bert Lee and Clara (Kunneman) Hedges. When Dean was 1 year old, his parents moved to Craig, where he spent his childhood and developed his love of the outdoors. Later his family moved to Grand Junction, where he attended high school.

He served in the U.S. Army as a Medic in World War II at the 28th Station Hospital in Japan.

He met Betty Jane Gleaton in Cortez in 1950, and they were married June 17, 1951, in Gustine, Texas. The minister who married them, the Rev. O.A. Manton, also married Betty’s parents in 1926. Dean and Betty lived in Texas their first six years, where he was store manager for the Piggly Wiggly grocery.

They moved to Grand Junction in 1957, where they raised their children. They also lived in Aspen for five years, and moved to Rifle in 1974.

Dean was a very gentle man who enjoyed a life of hunting, fishing, gardening, woodworking and was an accomplished artist. Dean and Betty owned and operated The Wooden Bucket Gift Shop and Gallery in Rifle for 24 years.

He is survived by his loving wife; son Larry Hedges of Snowmass; daughter Linda (John) Ijams of Grand Junction; grandchildren Dylan Ijams and Jessica Hedges; sisters Opal (Ben) Hatch of Grand Junction, Lurie (Delbert) Stump of Golden City, Mo., and Carol (David) Wood of Joplin, Mo.; sisters-in-law Fran (Mack) McFarland of Gustine, and Lilly (David) Cash of Greeley; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Dean was preceded in death by his brother, Robert Allen Hedges.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations be made in Dean’s name to the United Methodist-Presbyterian Church, 200 E. Fourth St., Rifle, CO 81650.

Cremation has taken place, and a memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. Friday, May 16, at the United Methodist-Presbyterian Church in Rifle. Pastor Rich Stoakes will officiate.

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