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Alta Louise Carpenter
Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Alta Louise Carpenter

Feb. 20, 1919-April 10, 2009

90 years young.

Louise was born to Harry and Alti Dyer in “The Pinions” at her father’s homestead, west of Mancos, Colo. She attended school in Mancos and graduated in 1937. She married J.I. (Jim) Carpenter in August of that year, starting their life together teaching school in the Disappointment Valley, north of Dolores, Colo. Later, she moved to California during the war years where husband Junior worked in the shipyards repairing war damaged ships. In 1948, wanting their sons to grow up in a country atmosphere, they returned to Colorado and started the Diamond T General Store in the lower Piedra River. A year later, they moved across the river and operated the old Rocky Mountain Store for many years.

In 1959, with the changing of Hwy. 160 and the consolidation of the county sawmills to Pagosa Springs, the old general store (which at one time had been a stagecoach stop between Durango and Pagosa) was closed, ending a part of history of western Archuleta County. Moving the family to Mesa Verde National Park, Mr. Carpenter started a very successful career with the National Park Service. From Mesa Verde, Bandeleir National Monument, and Rocky Mountain National Park, the Carpenters moved to Washington D.C., where Mr. Carpenter became the Chief Property, Procurement and Contract Officer for the National Park Service nationwide.

After nine years in the nation’s capital, Louise and Junior decided to return to God’s Country. Coming back to their homes at the Lower Piedra and Santa Fe, New Mexico, they retired in 1979.

Enjoying their retirement for many years, surrounded by loving family and friends in their two homes, Louise lost the love of her life after 55 years of marriage in 1992. She continued to live in Santa Fe and spent time with family and friends at the Lower Piedra. In 2006, her sons moved her home to Pagosa Springs. In her beautiful condominium she was surrounded by family and friends until she went to be with the Lord, April 10 of this year.

Louise Carpenter was an extraordinary person of great wisdom, understanding, forgiveness and kindness with unfathomable love for family and friends. She never spoke a bad word about anyone and would always say. “It’s alright, they are just doing the best they can.” You always felt the love in her presence. For many, many years, Louise was a faithful member of Eastern Star and United Methodist Women.

Mrs. Carpenter is survived by her son Marvin of Los Alamos, N.M., granddaughter Pam and great granddaughter Sierra and Brooke of Santa Fe, N.M., grandson Patrick and wife Amanda of San Antonio, Texas, and great granddaughters Taylor and great grandson Luke; son Medray of Pagosa Springs, grandson Medray II and wife Susan of Boulder, Colo., and granddaughter Meshja Dawn and great granddaughter Shaylene of Longmont, Colo.; son Van and wife Mary Kathryn of Pagosa Springs and grandson Sean of Columbia, Mo.; son Mason of Chimney Rock, Colo., sister-in-law Jamie Carpenter of Montrose, Colo., and sister-in-law Leta Dyer of Brownsville, Texas; niece Terri Blundell of Chimney Rock and daughter CassieAnne, and numerous nephews, nieces, grand nephews and grand nieces in Colorado, California, Arizona, Texas and Louisiana.

Memorial services will be held July 11, 2009, at 11 a.m. at the Mancos Memorial Cemetery in Mancos, Colo.