My mom and dad were two of the original staff members. My mom, Kathy, was one of the first ” lunch ladies.” She worked in the cafeteria for many years until the student union building was constructed. It became a gathering place where students could get hamburgers, fries, sandwiches, and drinks. I was known to the students as “the French fry kid”. With such a casual atmosphere and beautiful view, people could study or crank up the jukebox and shoot a game of pool. Later on, there were many events such as dances, movie nights, discussions, and an occasional guest speaker. I can also remember getting together with students to go watch actual plays down at “the crater”. I don’t know if they still have plays down there, but it made for a lot of wonderful memories.
My dad, Ralph, was the maintenance man, security guard, snowplow driver, emergency medical technician, and quite often a tow truck driver when someone would crash their car or motorcycle on the college road. He had to fix me up more than once as it just wasn’t an option to run to the hospital or clinic in Glenwood Springs.
Things were a lot different back in those days. Some of the former students and staff members may remember me hitchhiking on the college road to get to school in Glenwood. Otherwise, it was a 2-hour bus ride all the way through Spring Valley, up past the “little white school house”, down Cattle Creek to highway 82 and on to Glenwood.
As much as my mom and dad were “mother and father” figures to the students, they also did a lot for the Roaring Fork Valley as a whole. Ralph was a Garfield County deputy sheriff, volunteer fire fighter, and ambulance driver. He was an integral part of getting the ambulance services started for Glenwood Springs and Basalt, as well as kick starting the EMT programs from Rifle to Basalt.
My mom, Kathy helped coordinate many social events between the libraries, Hotel Colorado and other organizations. After leaving the college, my mom went to work at the Hotel Colorado. She loved it there and they loved her too.