Denver Wayne Emmons was born August 21, 1920 in Brown County, Ohio. He graduated from Russellville High School where he was a county all-star basketball player. He attended Miami University for several months before returning to his parents’ farm to assist them there.
He met the love of his life, Marilyn (Sammy) Derbyshire, in 1939 and they married two years later. They celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary this past August with family and friends in Colorado.
Soon after their marriage, he enlisted in the Army Air Corp and became a radar navigator with the 8th Air Force during WW II. As a 1st Lt. he was stationed in England and received the Distinguished Flying Cross as well as several other citations commemorating 29 missions flown over Germany.
In 1944 they returned to the family farm in Russellville where they spent many years enjoying the benefits of a small rural community. The family attended and served the Russellville Presbyterian Church. In addition to farming, Denver owned and operated Dixon Hardware Store which was home to the famous “liars bench” where locals gathered around a pot belly stove to swap stories.
After retirement Denver and Marilyn decided to re-locate in order to be near their only child and grandchildren. This decision took them to Los Altos, California; Dallas, Texas and finally to Montrose, Colorado, where they have resided for the past 13 years.
Denver died peacefully on November 9, 2016, surrounded by his family at Valley Manor Care Center.
One of his final statements was, “Thank you for a wonderful life.”
Survivors include Denver’s wife, Marilyn, daughter and son-in-law Cathy and Mike Ullman, 6 grandchildren (3 spouses), 5 great-grandchildren, 5 nieces and nephews, friend and caretaker, Roy Dantzman, and many other wonderful friends.
Preceding him in death were his parents, Ray and Ada Emmons and brother, Harold.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 PM, Friday, Nov. 25, 2016 at the Russellville Presbyterian Church under the direction of the Meeker Funeral Home. Burial will follow at the Linwood Cemetery with military services by the Walter Miller American Legion Post #394.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Russellville Presbyterian Church or Wounded Warriors.