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Obituaries

Al Pearson died Sept. 15, 2008, with his boots on in the splendor of the Grand Mesa.

He was born Nov. 19, 1929, in Hot Springs, S.D., and was raised on a ranch in Thunderhawk, S.D.

He served in the U. S. Air Force in San Antonio, where he met and married the love of his life, Mary Elizabeth Werland.



Al graduated from South Dakota State College in Brookings. He then went on to a career with the Bureau of Land Management fighting wildfires, walking fence line, and retired as chief of operations after 24 years.

He devoted his time and energy in service to Saint Joseph’s Catholic Parish, was a member of the Knights of Columbus, and volunteered at the VA Hospital.



He was a skilled craftsman and enjoyed fixing and building things not only at home, but also at his children’s homes. He was a gifted writer and had a wonderful sense of humor. He will be missed greatly.

Survivors include his wife of 56 years; daughters Rosemary (Rob) Huff of Grand Junction, Annalisa Pearson of Grand Junction, and Ginabeth (Dan) Langston of Denver; sons Charles (Joanne Potratz) Pearson of Grand Junction, Stephen Pearson of Lander, Wyo., Michael Pearson of Glenwood Springs, and Martin and (Lyndie Barnes) Pearson of Glenwood Springs; 13 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Al was preceded in death by daughter Patricia Ann Pearson; daughter-in-law Cindy (Miracle) Pearson; and granddaughter Grace Elizabeth Pearson.

A rosary will be recited at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 21, at Callahan Edfast Mortuary in Grand Junction. Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Sept. 22, at Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church, with a memorial service to follow at 1 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Cemetery. Family and friends are invited to a reception at Saint Joseph’s Parish Hall immediately after the VA Memorial Service.

Donations in memory of Al may be made to Catholic Outreach, one of his favorite charities.

Patricia J. Raaf died Sept. 16, 2008, at home in Snowmass Village. She was surrounded with the love of family, friends and Father Tom Dentici.

She was born April 6, 1958, in Santiago, Chile, to Jim and Angela Raaf. She lived there until moving to Ecuador in 1965. She moved to La Paz, Bolivia, in 1967. Patty graduated with a bachelor of arts in education from St. Mary’s College in Notre Dame, Ind., in 1981, and continued her studies toward a master’s in special education in California.

She taught children in the primary grades in California, Bolivia, Columbia, Mali, Ethiopia and Brazil. A supremely gifted teacher, Patty loved her students as though they were her own children.

Patty’s great devotion led her to spend the last five years of her life caring for her parents, making great personal sacrifices so her parents could continue living in the home they loved. Caring for her parents was the greatest joy of Patty’s life, and she did so with extraordinary dedication.

Patty was a citizen of the world, and loved, respected and deeply understood the people and the cultures in which she lived and visited. In addition to English, she spoke Spanish, Aymara (an Andean Indian language), German, French and Portuguese.

Patty filled the lives of those around her with laughter, joy, high spirits and love. She was a spark in every gathering. Her smile filled a room; the gleam in her eye brightened it. She had a network of friends in countries around the world. During her illness, Patty found great comfort in reading their Internet messages that tracked her health.

Throughout her illness, Patty faced a difficult situation with courage, stubbornness and abiding good humor. She will always remain an inspiration to her family, friends and students.

Patty is survived by her parents; sisters Angie (Jochen) Widdel, Barbara (Rainer) Wolff, Maria Elena (Scott) Medlock and Susie Raaf; twin Pam (Ivan) Prince; and all her nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, gifts may be sent in memory of Patricia Raaf to UNICEF, the Christian Children’s Fund, or the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

A vigil prayer service will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 21, at the Snowmass Community Chapel. All are welcome to share favorite memories at this service.

A funeral mass will be celebrated at 11:30 a.m. Monday, Sept. 22, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Aspen.

Maxie Robinson, 65, passed away Sept. 16, 2008, at his home in Parachute.

Maxie was born Jan. 21, 1943, in Greenville, S.C., to Maxie Thomas Robinson Sr. and Jessie (Ferguson) Robinson. After high school, Maxie served in the U.S. Army and then the Army Reserves.

He moved to the valley five years ago to be closer to his mother.

He is survived by his mother; son Wendell Scott Robinson; daughter Debra Lynn Whitaker; brother Calvin Robinson; sister Mary Salaz; and one grandchild.

Maxie was preceded in death by his father; and brothers Charles and Phillip Robinson.

Cremation has taken place, and a family service will be held at a later date in South Carolina.

Carlos Urbina, of Basalt, passed away Sept. 11, 2008.

He was born April 4, 1941, in El Salvador, to Natividad Bermudez and Maria Timotea Urbina.

Carlos worked at Hotel Jerome and the Aspen City Market. He lived in the Roaring Fork Valley for 10 years.

He is survived by his wife; daughters Marta, Carla, Mirna, and Lucia Urbina; sons Fernando and Carlos Urbina; brother Roberto Urbina; nephew Jose Remberto Mijango; niece Milgian Maribel Tellez; four grandchildren; one great-grandchild and many relatives.

He was preceded in death by his parents.


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