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Obituary - Herb Browning

Herb Browning Longtime Archuleta County resident Herb Browning passed away at his home in Cornville, Ariz. on Dec. 28, 2010.

Herb was born Feb. 1, 1930, on a farm in eastern Colorado to Charley and Marie (Davison) Browning. On March 28, 1948, he married Iona May Reitmeyer. In 1952, he went to work for the Colorado Division of Wildlife as a fish culturist. He held that position for five years. The remaining 28 years Herb served as a Wildlife Conservation Officer. In 1962, Herb, Iona and daughters Penny and Cindy moved to the Division of Wildllife property at the Devil Creek Management area. Herb remained there until his retirement in 1985.

During his time in Pagosa Country, Herb was very active in the Pagosa community. He was a member of the United Methodist Church, served on numerous commitees and also held numerous governing offices in the church. Herb was instrumental in starting the Russ Hill Memorial Bazaar, the major remodel of the church in the mid to late 1960s, the preservation and installation of the orginal stain glass windows in the new church and initiating the UMC Thrift Shop.

In addition to his duties with the Division of Wildlife, Herb chose to be actively involved in other ways to serve the people of Archuleta County. He was one of the county’s first EMTs, served as deputy coroner, served as a school board member and every Christmas served as a “helper” for a very famous visitor from the North Pole.

Herb was very proud of his service to the people of Colorado and cherished his oppurtunity to work in the beauty and splendor of southwestern Colorado with its magnificent array of wildlife. Herb wanted to be remembered as a man who loved his family dearly, who always tried to be fair and honest in his law enforcement dealings, as well in other walks of life.

Herb was preceded in death by his beloved wife Iona, his parents Charley and Marie, step-mother Esther, a daughter Patty Sue, brothers Dwight and Ron. He is survived by daughters Penny (Andy) Planeta, Cindy (Richard) Phillips, sister Rose Beechley, sister-in-law Peggy Browning (Dwight), step-sister Judy Hott, seven grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and a huge group of friends across the country who will miss his humor and warmth for the rest of their lives.

Services were held on Jan. 5 at the Mountain View United Metholdist Church in Cottonwood, Ariz.

An online guestbook is available at