Conrad Sramek (June 6, 1945 — November 25, 2017)
Conrad Sramek — a rancher, skilled craftsman, beloved husband, patriot and to so many a best friend, mentor and true western gentleman — passed away while doing what he loved, being engaged in work at his home with his wife, Annette. Conrad sat on the grass for his last work break aside the bank of East Elk Creek, satisfied in his morning efforts, while viewing the picturesque scene of his mountain home on Saturday, November 25, 2017. Conrad was a telecommunication engineer, master mechanic, wood worker and all around tradesman that enjoyed being busy performing all varieties of maintenance and improvement projects on his pristine ranch property. His pride and attention to detail shined in the home, pastures and the gardens he kept with Annette.
Conrad (Connie) was the kind of man who would enthusiastically share his great skills, work ethic and knowledge in assisting others on their projects or to discuss and troubleshoot a particular problem or challenging task. Conrad took immense pride in a job well done, maintained strong moral convictions, held his Christian faith, was always helpful to others and inspired all those that he knew. He truly lived up to his name’s meaning as “Brave Wise Counselor,” always speaking in plain honest truth and living by the creed of “loving thy neighbor.”
Conrad was a man of faith who attended Mountain View Church in Glenwood Springs for 26 years. He loved being an usher and the joy of greeting people for over 15 years each and every Sunday.
Conrad was an outdoorsman and observer of nature who enjoyed hunting, fishing, collecting and analyzing weather data. Conrad was a cattleman and rancher in his youth and in recent years seasonally nurtured a small herd on his property.
He will be so missed by his wife, wonderful neighbors along East Elk Creek, friends, coworkers and by his brothers and sisters in Christ at Mountain View Church.
Connie was born June 6, 1945, in Leon, Iowa, shortly thereafter moved to Cattle Creek, with father Frank, mother Birdie, and older brother Deloit. In 1956 the family moved to Main Elk north of New Castle, where he helped his father put in their home’s first electricity.
He spent his younger years on the Flat Tops tending cattle near Cow Camp, fishing Adams Lake, hunting, and exploring the surrounding mountainous area he knew and loved. His graduating Class of 1963 was the last from New Castle High School, where he played on the basketball team and built hot rods. He studied engineering for two years at Le Lourneau College in Longview, Texas, and worked as a Motorola Service Center Technician, repairing vacuum tube and solid state radios along with his duties servicing equipment by climbing communication towers above 1500 feet.
With his enthusiastic interest in auto sports and innovative mechanical skills he participated in dirt track, formula and dragster racing. He was the racers edge in horsepower and performance. His engines had dozens of feature wins throughout Texas. While in Longview he met Annette, his wife of 51 years.
In 1987 he and Annette relocated to Craig, where he began work as an electronic technician for the state of Colorado, Division of Telecommunications, and in 1991 moved to New Castle. In his 24-year career as a state telecommunications engineer, Conrad left an indelible mark in the high quality state of communications that serve Colorado.
Conrad’s work ethic, skills and unsurpassed knowledge of physical science and engineering has touched many people and led him to conquer momentous tasks for the citizens of Colorado and his community. He maintained impeccable performance in engineering communication systems, installing and maintaining equipment at the various state sites and facilities around northwestern Colorado. With tools and analog meter in hand he lent two helping hands to anyone within his reach. Conrad could repair, modify, fabricate, or re-engineer anything and everything from electro/mechanical, components to sprinkler heads to the most complex of circuitry.
Conrad held an FCC General Radio Telephone Operator License, was a Snow Cat operator and a Certified Tower Climber for over 45 years. He was instrumental in the design, installation and maintenance of several 911 dispatch centers, dozens of microwave and two-way radio communication facilities, NOAA weather, AM/FM hazardous radio, and the Hanging Lake Tunnel Complex. His service came with inherent risks to repair ice blown towers, lightning strike outages, and equipment failures, all while in extreme mountain conditions, any hour of any day. His commitment to public safety communications was crucial to all first responders, the Colorado State Patrol, the Department of Transportation, Division of Parks and Wildlife, Corrections, federal and local governments as well as the general public. Many of his countless deeds have been and never will be seen or heard. Silently they will continue to serve saving the lives of many for decades to come.
Conrad was preceded in death by parents, Frank and Birdie Sramek, and by his brother Deloit. He is survived by his wife Annette of New Castle; 2 nieces, Marlana Casey of Jacksonville, Florida, and Karla Melton of Hilliard, Florida; sister in-law Pattie Sramek, also of Hilliard, Florida; and lots of cousins.
A memorial service will be held at Mountain View Church of Glenwood Spring, 2195 C.R. 154, on Saturday, December 16, at 2:00 pm. Reception to follow.