WITH SYMPATHY: We are sad to announce that Lyons centenarian Don Colard passed away Sunday morning, April 14, 2019. He had been failing in health for a couple of months. He would have been 102 years old on July 26th. He was often praised for being a kind man, and always had great tales to tell. We will miss seeing him walking around the High Street block each morning at 6:00 a.m.
Don was last of the large Colard family who moved here in 1917. They attended the one-room Silver Dell school house (which was moved to the Colard Ranch around 1931, closed in 1941, and destroyed by arsonists. burned down); and, then attended the Lyons High School. Their ranch is now Spring Gulch Subdivision where 200 to 300 families live. He was spry, even in his 90’s. He would saw off tree branches for neighbors, and pull hundreds of mullein weeds on his family’s ranch, and performed music for the local Golden Gang senior group. In his youth he was known for his ranching skills and rodeo horse riding.
===FAMILY HISTORY: five generations:
#1 – Honora (born in Las Animas City, Colorado in 1862) and Eleanor (born in Boneffe, Belgium in 1868) Colard moved from Illinois to the Eastern plains of Colorado near Limon in 1905. There were three children, including Arthur, (#2) who married Annie Haag from Council Bluffs, Iowa, in 1908. They moved to the valley east of Lyons in 1910; and homesteaded in the Spring Gulch area northwest of Lyons in 1918. They lived in the old Rowell ranch from 1942-1949; (That log house is over 100 years old and now owned by Marie Gordon. It was used as a tollhouse on the stage road.)
#2 – Arthur and Annie children were: Eleanor, Clair, Leonard, Vern, Donald, Thelma, Raymond, Inez, Roy, Gerald, and Leon. Arthur died in 1972 and Anna in 1978; both are buried in the Lyons Cemetery
#3 – Don was born in 1917; he married Betty Johnson (later divorced). He served with Company 23rd Quartermaster Regiment in the South Pacific from 1942 to 1945 during WWII. He played the guitar and harmonica at various events in Lyons, including the Golden Gang senior group.
#4 -5 -6 = Don is survived by daughters Debbie Schneider, who lived with him, and Linda Billings of Longmont and several grandchildren: Lonnie Billings, Brenda Billings, and Scott Schneider; and many great grandchildren, and even two great-great grandchildren. A few of the Colard Family grandkids and great grandkids still live in the area: Jerry Tabor (Lyons ), son of Thelma and Roy Tabor; and Rhonda Hirschfeld (Lyons ) and Cindy Tilson (Wyoming), daughters of Leon and Mary Colard.
===This “History” was gathered by LaVern Johnson, Historian, from Pioneer Book and supplemented by material from the Lyons History Video Project, Kathleen Spring.
===The Lyons History Video Project has a video of Clair Colard taking a road tour of the area surrounding Lyons (20 years ago); and a two hour interview of Don Colard about 15 yrs ago. Don’s interview is available for viewing during the Redstone Museum’s open hours during the summer.