Russell D. Vanatta twenty year resident of Fort Morgan, CO. passed away peacefully at his home on October 12, 2012. He was born April 2, 1927, in Bridgewater, Iowa to James W. & Edna Vanatta.
Russell married Viola M. Kralik in June, 1949, in Greenfield, IA. The couple moved to Boulder, CO in the mid-50’s. They divorced in 1962, remarried in 1969, and divorced again in 1989, they remained lifelong friends. Russ joined the US Army in 1945, serving in Germany during WW II before contracting rheumatic fever. After his discharge, he worked for many years as parts & service manager for both Pontiac and BMW in Boulder. Russ moved to Fort Morgan in 1991, looking for the rural lifestyle that reminded him of his childhood home in Iowa. He loved finding cast off items such as small appliances, power saws, and small equipment of any sort & restored them to working condition in his basement shop. He could be seen riding his bike around town & to his storage unit where he loved to tinker with the 1954 Cadillac, kept in original condition that was his pride and joy. He enjoyed driving in the local Fourth of July parades.
Survivors include his children, Connie Hoge, and her husband Vernon of Arlington, WA, James A. Vanatta of Louisville, CO; Laura Vanatta of Gilbert, AZ, 7 grandchildren, 7 great grandchildren, and his special friend of fifteen years Lois Carpenter of Fort Morgan. He was preceded in death by his son, Russell Alan Vanatta; his parents; brother’s Ralph & Don/Ruth Vannatta of Boulder; 2 sisters Evelyn/Virgil Glade && Blanch/Martin Tracy both of Greenfield, IA.
Services: A memorial service will be held Thursday, October 18th, at 11:00 AM at the Heer & Dahl Mortuary Chapel in Fort Morgan, CO. Graveside services will be held on Monday, October 22, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. at the Greenfield Cemetery in Greenfield, IA. Friends who wish may make memorial gifts to the Fort Morgan American Legion, American Veterans of Foreign Wars, o Disabled American Veterans. The Steen Funeral Home in Greenfield is in charge of the local arrangements.