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Wilma “Jean” Kidd entered this earth on Nov. 7, 1926, and peacefully passed on Oct. 19, 2013.
Jean was born to Ira Walno and Emma (Perrick) Walno in Wakefield, Kan. She grew up on a wheat farm and graduated from Wakefield Rural High School in 1945. She graduated high school with a teaching certificate in Normal Education and started teaching college at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kan., that summer. She taught at Timber Creek School in Wakefield, Kan., that fall. Later, she taught elementary school in Milfred, Kan. She attended college at the University of Colorado during summers and earned her teaching degree.
She met the love of her life in 1949 and married James W. Kidd on Aug. 27, 1950, on the Walno Cattle Ranch at Brown’s Corner in Loveland near where McKee Hospital now stands. They began their life together back in Kansas in Jim’s family business. From their 52 year union, they raised five children: Doug, Debera, Danette, Diane and Kole, plus a number of surrogate children. They enjoyed traveling and made their home in many communities.
After leaving Enterprise, Kan., they returned to Loveland and raised their family. Jean worked in the Big Thompson Library while their children were in school. In the mid-70’s they moved to Cody, Wyo., which was perhaps Jean’s favorite place. She worked at Y-Tex and Young World before returning to Colorado in 1979 for Diane to finish high school at Poudre in Fort Collins.
In 1982 they moved to Walden/North Park and spent the next 10 years enjoying their life in the mountains. Jean and Jim loved to picnic and go fishing. Jean fulfilled one of her passions by teaching Sunday school at the Community Church during her time in Walden. She spent hours with her grandchildren teaching them piano, playing games, reading and fishing.
They left for a lower elevation in 1992 and made a new home in Grover, where Kole started school. In Grover, Jean was able to continue teaching Sunday School and spent countless hours in her garden. Her claim to fame was bringing prohibition back to Grover in 1996 making the national news. It was something she believed in strongly.
They moved onto Kimball, Neb. for Kole to finish school. Jean spent much of her time cooking for Kole and his buddies, tending to Jim, reading and working on puzzles. Her greatest joy in Kimball was watching Kole grow into a fine young man.
The last five years, Jean spent her life in Wellington enjoying her family. She will always be remembered for the beautiful music she could make and the incredible food she would prepare. Her greatest love was her family and she made every possible effort to be near them, care for them and watch them grow. Above all, Jean was a lady and the kindest, most gentle person one would meet. She had a smile to melt your heart and her words of wisdom were delivered with grace. She will forever be missed and treasured.
Wilma Jean Kidd was preceded in death by her parents Ira and Emma (Perrick) Walno; her sister Betty (Walno) Thrush; and her husband James Walus Kidd. She is survived by her siblings JoAnn Budden of Arizona and Wylie Walno (Bonnie) of Livermore; children Douglas K. Kidd of Bellvue; Debera K. Pittington (Robert) of Walden; Danette K. Kidd-Bailey (Blaine) of Deadwood, S.D.; Diane K. Gerlach of Wellington; and W. Kole Kidd (Jessica) of Fort Collins. She also is survived by grandchildren Jamie J. Brown (Richard) and Jodie L. Douthit (Alan) of Walden; Mindy E. Kidd , James R. Kidd and Jennifer K. Lyman (Chris) of Loveland; LeeAnn Kidd of Paris, France; and Kelsie L. Gerlach of Wellington. She had seven great grandchildren, numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and surrogate children that called her mom or grandma.
Jean’s celebration of life was held at Kibbey Fishburn Funeral Home in Loveland on Oct. 26. Memorial contributions may be made to the Wellington Fire Department.