Colorado Funeral Directors Association


In Memory

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  • Wednesday, October 18, 2017 5:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Charles W. McCulley

    Charles W. McCulley, 78, slipped away peacefully on Saturday, October 14, 2017.  

    • Visitation will be from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, Friday October 20, 2017 following with a Elks Memorial Service at 6:30 pm at Angelus Chapel, 1104 S. Circle Drive. Colorado Springs, CO. 
    • Visitation Saturday, October 21, 2017, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm at Angelus Chapel, 1102 E. Evans Ave, Pueblo, CO. 
    • Rosary/Vigil Mass Sunday, October 22, 2017, 5:00 pm at St Francis Xavier Catholic Church, 611 Logan St, Pueblo, CO. 
    • Mass of the Christian Burial 10:00 am Monday October 23, 2017, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 1145 Aspen Rd, Pueblo, CO. Interment Roselawn Cemetery. 
    • Condolences may be shared with the family by visiting www.angelusfuneradirectors.com

    Charles W. McCulley was born July 18, 1939 in Pocatello, Idaho to his proud parents, William Sonny McCulley and Juanita and Clinton Young Morris who preceded him in death; along with his devoted wife, Petra Gonzalez de McCulley; mother-in-law, Juana Heredia Gonzalez; uncle, Spencer McCulley; brother-in-laws, Efrain, Juan, Hector, and Santander; sister-in-laws, Margarita, Cecelia, Mercedes, and Gabriela.  Charles was the founder of the Angelus Chapel Mortuaries in Pueblo and Colorado Springs.

    Charles W. McCulley was literally born into the funeral business.  From the time he was 8 years old, the curious native Idahoan traveled to Chicago in the summers to work with his uncle, who was the head embalmer at a funeral home. While a typical child might be apprehensive in such an environment, Charles embraced the experience, learning everything he could from his uncle.  He did his first embalming at age 14. He loved the work despite his mother's desire of wanting him to be a doctor.  He was an altar boy in his Catholic Parish in Pocatello, Idaho, and the priests there encouraged him to study for the seminary, but Charles had other plans. He wanted to be an undertaker.

    Charles graduated from Pocatello High School in 1958, then elected to study Mortuary Science in San Francisco, California, where he graduated second in his class in June 1959. After graduation, he obtained employment with funeral homes in the Bay Area before venturing south to Los Angeles where he joined the staff of the prestigious Angelus Funeral Home. It was there that he garnered a wealth of experience, including assisting to prepare the body of legendary singer, Nat King Cole. He was amazed to see the wealth of attendance of celebrities for Mr. Cole's funeral.

    Uncle Sam "came a calling" with a draft card. Charles joined the Army and further developed his skills as a mortician while also doing duty as a radio and television announcer.  While stationed in Panama, he announced the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on the Southern Command Network radio and television station.  It was also while stationed in Panama that Charles met Petra Gonzalez de Murillo, whom he would marry and start a family.

    While stationed in Panama, a classmate from the San Francisco School of Mortuary Science, Puebloan T.G. McCarthy, contacted Charles to advise him about a funeral home that was available for sale in Pueblo, Colorado.  Alva Jones had operated the funeral home since 1921, and he and his wife Helen where planning on retiring. McCarthy felt that Charles would be the perfect man to serve the community.  Jones’ Mortuary served the Hispanic and African-American populations of Pueblo.  During that time, other funeral homes in Pueblo wouldn’t provide service to those two groups. Mr. Jones's funeral home had paved the way for the McCulley’s.

    Charles and his beloved wife Petra purchased the Jones Funeral Home in May of 1968. They later changed the name to Angelus Chapel. During the time they started their funeral home business in Pueblo, the Civil Rights Movement was well on its way and unrest was about to erupt following the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Democratic Presidential nominee, Robert F. Kennedy. While not blatant, discrimination and prejudice were things the McCulleys encountered as they established the funeral home. They continued with the tradition of serving minority families not served by other mortuaries and did so with dignity and pride. Petra’s first language was Spanish and she acted as a go-between for Charles and the Hispanic families. Innovation was nothing new to Charles, and he wasn’t shy about making changes in the way funeral homes did business in Pueblo. One of the most notable achievements was the introduction of lavender-colored vehicles at the time when basic black or white vehicles was the Pueblo standard. In L.A, every funeral home had its own distinctive color. It turned out to be a wise business promotion and a good one at that; the eye-catching, soothing color proved to be both popular and conducive to the new business. It is nothing less than an understatement to call Charles a “visionary”.

    Charles became heavily involved in several civic service organizations, such as the NAACP, where he served as president for two terms; the Pueblo Human Resources Commission (he was the first chairman); Mount Carmel Credit Union where he served as President of the board of directors, the Disabled American Veterans. Masonics and Elks. He was also recognized for recruiting minorities for the Colorado State Patrol and Rio Grande Railroad. In addition, the funeral home was the first minority-owned funeral home to secure a government contract to take care of the arrangements for military men and women of El Paso County.

    Like mentors before him, Charles continued to pass on his trade to his and Petra's children. Today, sons Frank and Joseph operate the Angelus Funeral Home in Colorado Springs.  His daughter, Yanera, and son, Lil Joseph, operate the funeral home in Pueblo. Daughters Velkis, Juanita and Tamisha, willingly help out and actively assist where and when needed. Charles had begun to groom the next generation, starting with his grand-daughter Zolanye. 

    When Charles and Petra moved to Pueblo, he promised her they would stay two to five years and then sell the funeral home and move to California. But once they met the people of Pueblo, drank the water and ate the Green Chile, they fell in love with Pueblo and made it the city that they would call home, raised their family and grew their personal and professional connections. In May of 2018, the family owned business will be celebrating 50 years in business. The funeral home has been a mainstay in Pueblo for 94 years.

    Charles loved his profession.  He would say that "it is a ministry. It’s not about the money, but about helping people when they need it most."  He never had any plans to retire from the family-owned business. For someone who’s seen a lot of death, he was typically upbeat and joyful when he was asked for his advice on living. “You learn to respect life. Enjoy each day. Rejoice and be glad!," he would say. Every day when he arises, he thanks God for the day and asks him to let him be a good steward for those he is privileged to serve.

    Charles leaves his legacy to his children: Franklin O. McCulley, Joseph DaCosta McCulley, Velkis (Greg) McCulley-Matthews, Juanita (Jerry) McCulley-Santos, Yanera (Donnie) McCulley-Sedillo, Tamisha McCulley and Lil Joseph F. McCulley; daughter in law: Yvetta DaCosta; his grandchildren Tinisha, Giovanni, Charles, Lelani, Zolanye Tiffany Rose, Ty, Ashley, Yael, Charles Lee, Niko, Jachob, Jesse and Shawn; his godchildren: Raylynn and Tyson; his aunt Nina McCulley of Pocatello , Idaho; sister-in-law, Lydia Gomez-Gibbs; nieces and nephews: Gasper “Matoni”, Alfredo (Noris), Yadis, Amada, Etilvia (Ricardo), Irasema (Esteban) Carlito, Luis Rafa, Mario, Enqrique, Cecilio, Negro, Mariana, Hector  II, Yuri, Yira and Yeri, all of Panama. Cousins  Jimmy McCulley, Olympic WA, Paul McCulley, Pocatello ID, Theresa McCulley, Las Vegas, NV, Cynthia Bradshaw, of Columbus, MO, and his entire family of the Angelus Chapel Funeral Homes. Compadres, Don and Consuelo Sedillo.

    Information provided by Angelus Funeral Directors, 10/18/2017


    Posted October 17, 2017

    Colorado funeral director Charles W. McCulley, MSP, passed away on October 14, 2017 in Pueblo after a brief illness.  

    Charles was born July 18, 1939 in Pocatello, ID. He was 8 years old when he began working with his uncle in the funeral business; did his first embalming at age 14 and eventually graduated from the San Francisco College of Mortuary Science. He was a pioneer and mentor to many funeral directors throughout his career.

    Charles and his late wife, Petra, were owners of the Angelus Chapel Mortuaries for more than 50 years, now succeeded by their children. 

    Mr. McCulley is survived by 7 children and 7 grandchildren.

    Services are pending; additional details will be posted here soon.

    Article from Pueblo Chieftain: http://www.chieftain.com/news/pueblo/trailblazer-funeral-home-owner-mcculley-dies-at/article_a838ca48-4bf4-521a-b4e5-ebde2996aead.html


  • Tuesday, April 04, 2017 7:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Louis S. “Lou” Atencio, of Erie, CO (formerly of Longmont), father of Patrick Atencio, CMSP, at Howe Mortuary in Longmont, passed away peacefully at his home in the early morning of April 2, 2017. The family he loved so dearly was by his side. He was 78. 

    Lou was born in Denver, Colorado on June 30, 1938, and attended Denver Public Schools, graduating from Denver West High School in 1956. Following graduation, Lou enlisted in the US Navy and worked as an Air Traffic Control Specialist serving in San Diego and Oahu, Hawaii. After being honorably discharged, he went to work for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and upon completion of schooling at the FAA Academy, he began his career at Stapleton Airfield. In the winter of 1960, while on a date with his girlfriend, Florence Trujillo, they decided to elope. On November 20, 1960, Lou and Florence were married in Raton, New Mexico. Over the course of the next 11 years, Lou and Florence were blessed with four children. 

    In 1962, Lou transferred to the Air Route Traffic Control Center in Longmont. Lou worked for the next 36 years at that same FAA facility eventually retiring as an Air Traffic Control Supervisor in 1998. Upon retirement, Lou started employment with the Washington Consulting Group (WCG) as an Air Traffic Control Enroute Instructor. He retired from WCG in 2003. Following his second retirement, Lou moved his family to the Vista Ridge Community in Erie, Colorado. In 2004, Lou would embark upon a part-time job as Starter for the Vista Ridge/Colorado National Golf Course. Whether watching, participating, coaching or overseeing, Lou loved sports and staying active.

    Lou is survived by his wife of 56 years, Florence of Erie; daughter, Veronica Atencio of Lakewood; sons, Michael (Christy) of Reno, Nevada, Patrick of Erie and Mario (Keri) of Scottsdale, Arizona; grandchildren, Amber Lucero, Monica “Mo” Lontine, Vincent Lontine, Cole Atencio, Sydney Atencio, Skylar Atencio, Blake Atencio, Francesca Atencio and Max Atencio; great-grandchildren, Antonio Portillo, Dion Lucero, Mariah Lontine, Nizhoni Lontine and Leilani Lontine; sister, Pauline (Dave) Rivera; and many nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, Lou was preceded in death by his sister, Beverly Jean Atencio and granddaughter, Claire Atencio.

    Visitation will be held at Howe Mortuary in Longmont from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Sunday, April 9, followed by Rosary Prayers at 5:00 pm. Funeral services will be at 12:00 pm on Monday, April 10, 2017 at Rocky Mountain Christian Church in Niwot. Burial will follow at Longmont Mountain View Cemetery. A reception will follow the burial at Rocky Mountain Christian Church in Niwot. 

  • Monday, March 27, 2017 3:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Updated 3/27/2017

    Ted E. Kinzer, 75 of Mesa, AZ passed away on March 20, 2017.  

    Ted was born in Beloit, WI.  He is survived by his brothers Philip (Sara), Steven (Gloria), and sisters Kathryn Kinzer and Kristen Martin (Frank); nephews Shawn Kinzer (Brooke); Brendan Ryan (Courtney); David Narrin (Brandie) and niece Angela Flaminio (John), as well as great nephew Kendrick Kinzer and great niece Nina Flaminio.  

    Ted was a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater and The Wisconsin Institute of Mortuary Science and was an officer in the US Army.  

    “Uncle Ted” as he was called by so many children and adults alike traveled the southwestern United States most recently as a Sales Rep for The Dodge Company.  Ted’s sense of humor coupled with his pursuit of sales and service excellence endeared him to all he met.  

    A family graveside ceremony will be held in Beloit, WI.  

    A celebration of life ceremony is being planned for the Phoenix area during the first week of June 2017.  Arrangements entrusted to Messinger Indian School Mortuary, Scottsdale, AZ

    Ted will be dearly missed by his numerous friends and colleagues in Colorado and across the country. 

    Ted Kinzer at the 2001 Colorado Combined Convention

      


  • Monday, January 23, 2017 6:40 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Louis Michael "Mike" James passed away on January 21, 2017 after a short illness. 

    He was born September 20, 1942 in Oxford, Nebraska. He graduated from the Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science in 1964 and began working at Howard Mortuary in Denver, Colorado. Mike stayed with that establishment for 44 years through its purchase by SCI in 1971, mergers with Moore Mortuary in 1976, and eventually the Olinger Mortuaries in 1987. 

    He was licensed as a Funeral Director/Embalmer by the State of Colorado and maintained his #899 license number even as a Certified Mortuary Science Practitioner.

    Mike was honored by his peers in 1998 with the Colorado Funeral Directors Association's Mentor Award for being an outstanding embalmer and teacher-mentor to others in the field. 

    He had many friends throughout the state in the funeral service community and he will be greatly missed.

    Visitation will be held Thursday, January 26, 2017, from 2:00 to 8:00 PM at Olinger Crown Hill Mortuary in Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

    Graveside Service is scheduled on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, from 2:00 to 2:30 PM at Olinger Crown Hill Cemetery, Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

    Obituary and guest book is available online. 


    Leroy Wittrup, John Glaspy and Mike James were honored with the CFDA's Mentor Award in 1998.

  • Monday, December 12, 2016 1:13 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Colorado funeral director Paul D. Telleen passed away on December 9, 2016. He was a resident of Fort Collins.  

    Paul was born on December 2, 1952. He graduated from the San Francisco College of Mortuary Science in 1976. Paul was licensed funeral director in Colorado and was certified as a Mortuary Science Practitioner in 1982. He worked at Goodrich Mortuary and for Allnutt Funeral Service in Fort Collins for many years. 

    Visitation will be Thursday, December 15, 2016 from 7:00 to 9:00 PM at Trinity Lutheran Church, 301 E. Stuart Street, Fort Collins, CO 80525. 

    Funeral service will be held on Friday, December 16, 2016 at 10:00 AM. Emtombment at Grandview Cemetery following the reception at 1:00 PM.

    View obituary and guest book online.

  • Wednesday, October 05, 2016 1:58 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Louis “Rudy” Trujillo (aka Baby), 71 of Denver passed away peacefully Monday, September 26, 2016. 

    He was born September 11, 1945 in Denver, Colorado. He graduated in 1964 from West High School in Denver Colorado. He attended the Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science and graduated August 11, 1978. He was the founder of Trujillo Funeral Home in Denver, Colorado

    Rudy is survived by his beloved wife Charlotte Trujillo. Father of Ramon (Raylene), David (Rose), DeeAnn (Chris). Step father of Janella. Grandfather of Jayare, Anthony, Maryah, Malachi, Isaih, Melanie, Melody, Kyle and Julie. Step grandfather of Amber, Anna, Emiliano. Brother of Archie (Daphne), Tony (Cynthia) and Ronnie (Wendy). Also survived by a dear a cousin Delia Rivera, “Patron” Annette SantaCruz, numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He is preceded in death by his parents, Luis and Emily Trujillo and daughter Denise Trujillo.


    Services will be held on Friday, October 7, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. at His Love Fellowship, 910 Kalamath Street, Denver, CO. Entombment at Mt. Lindo Cemetery.

    Click here for Tribute Wall



  • Wednesday, September 21, 2016 11:09 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Mary L. Wash, mother of Joe Walsh, CMSP, owner of 5280 Cremations in Denver, passed away on September 19, 2016.

    She is survived by sons, Larry (Christy), Doug (MaryAnn), Joe (Cindy),  8 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren. 

    Services will be held on Friday, September 23, at St. Louis Catholic Church, 3301 South Sherman Street, Englewood, CO 80113. The Rosary at 9:30 AM and Mass 10:00 AM. Burial will take place at Mount Olivet Cemetery following the mass.


  • Tuesday, September 20, 2016 12:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CFDA will prepare a short video to remember colleagues, family and loved ones who have passed away during the past year. The video will be shown during the Annual Meeting on Thursday, November 10.

    If you'd like to recognize someone in this tribute video, please email the following details to the CFDA office no later than October 31:

    • Name of deceased
    • Dates of birth and death
    • Affiliation and Relationship (such as Father of Jane Smith, Funeral Director, Colorado Funeral Directors)
    • Photo of the deceased

  • Saturday, September 10, 2016 9:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    John J. Berg, 73, of Green Valley, AZ, formerly of Kimball, NE, died on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at Banner University Medical Center in Tucson. He served as President of the Colorado Funeral Directors Association in 1986.

    John was born on Sept 10, 1942 in Wilkinsburg, PA to Jacob and Helen (Fails) Berg. He attended school in Penn Hills PA and graduated from Penn Hills High School in 1960. He obtained a two year degree from Point Park Junior College in Pittsburgh and then graduated from Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science in 1965. He enlisted in the United States Navy and served as a corpman for the Marines in the Vietnam conflict. He and Carolyn Budz were married on May 4, 1968. They owned and operated the John Berg Funeral Home in Franklin, PA for 5 years. The family then moved to Trinidad, CO and in 1977 began working for the Allnutt Funeral Service in Greeley, CO and then in Kimball, NE. They retired to Green Valley, AZ. 

    John was a long-time member and Past President of the Colorado Funeral Directors Association and a member of the National Funeral Directors Association. He served in several different offices for both organizations. He was also a member of the Colorado Jaycees. He is a member of St. Francis in the Valley Episcopal Church in Green Valley. 

    He began his employment with the Allnutt Funeral family in 1977 and remained an active part of this family business for 38 years. He enjoyed taking an active part in the organizations that he belonged to and was active in his church activities. He was the ultimate funeral director and had a wonderful sense of humor. John enjoyed traveling, spending time with family and friends and the beauty and wildlife of the Arizona desert.


    He is survived by his wife, Carolyn of Green Valley; daughters, Jennifer Brownlee and fiancée Geoff Gaebe of Santee CA; Jessica (Andy) Laws of Gering, NE; sister, Jayne (Howard) Evans of Ft. Lauderdale, FL; brother, Philip Berg of Clintonville, PA; brother-in-law, Robert (Marion) Budz of Littleton, CO; sister-in-law, Pat (Tom) Bassetti of Sarver, PA and 5 grandchildren, Brandon, Kyla, Tabor, Annalee (Brandon) and Jerilyn. 

    Services for John will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Sept 22, 2016 at the Cantrell Funeral Home in Kimball. Reverend Christine Plantz will officiate. Visitation will be from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Wed., Sept. 21st at the funeral home. Burial will be in Kimball Cemetery. 

    In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to St. Francis in the Valley Episcopal Church, 600 S. La Canada Ave, Green Valley, AZ 85614, to the USO or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

    For more information, visit http://www.cantrellfh.com/


  • Monday, May 09, 2016 8:29 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Betty Wolverton, age 77 of Hotchkiss, died May 4, 2016. She is the wife of CFDA Past President W. Art Wolverton (1990); mother of CFDA Past President Craig Wolverton (1996); and mother of Eric Wolverton, SCI Market Director, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

    Betty was born October 24, 1938 in Greeley, Colorado to Cecil G. and Ruth (Bull) Staver, the second of three children. As a child, she lived in Greeley and Brighton, Colorado, before her family settled in Fort Collins, CO. She attended Colorado State College of Education, now the University of Northern Colorado, where she received her degree in elementary education. While in college, she met W. Arthur Wolverton, and they married on December 29, 1960, in Fort Collins.

    Betty taught school in Portland, OR, Cheyenne, WY, Denver, CO, and for most of her career in Hotchkiss, CO. 

    Betty is survived by three children; son Craig (Julee) Wolverton of Montrose, CO, daughter Diane Wolverton of Thornton, CO, and son Eric (Tanya) Wolverton of Downingtown, PA. She has five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She is also survived by her brother, Dr. Robert A. Staver, of The Dalles, OR. She was preceded in death by her parents and one sister, Dorothy Hill, of Montrose.

    Betty was a member of the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church, the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority, P.E.O. Chapter DT, and an alumni of the Alpha Phi Sorority. 

    A funeral service will be held at the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church on Monday, May 9, 2016. Visitation will take place prior to the funeral beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the church, with the funeral to follow at 11:00 a.m. Burial will follow on Monday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. at the Cedaredge Cemetery, in Cedaredge, CO.

    Memorial contributions may be made to Beta Sigma Phi, c/o Margie Hollembeak, 11700 3300 Road, Hotchkiss, CO 81419 towards the scholarship fund, or to the Hotchkiss United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 576, Hotchkiss, CO 81419. Friends and family may leave their condolences at www.martinmortuary.com

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Colorado Funeral Directors Association,  P O Box 631664, Highlands Ranch, CO 80163-1664 U.S.A. 

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