Mildred A. Pitchford, 101, of Englewood, Colorado passed away peacefully on February 5, 2018.
Mildred or “Millie” was born in Yuma, Colorado on December 6, 1916, the youngest child of Duncan and Lena Blach McCall.
Her family life changed dramatically in December of 1918 when her mother died in the Spanish Flu Epidemic.
She and her 2 brothers and 2 sisters (Clara, Lawrence, Mark and Barbara) were dispersed among relatives in the Yuma area, never all living together again.
Millie moved to Denver when living with her older sister Clara. They moved around a lot. She went to many of Denver’s elementary schools and a couple of Junior Highs before attending all 4 years at East High School, graduating in 1935.
She was able to attend Colorado State College of Education in Greeley with a PEO Sisterhood Educational fund loan and of course working for her room and board in the office of the administration at Greeley.
During her 4 summers in her college years she worked at Cheley Colorado Camp near Estes Park. This was one of the highlights of her life. Years later she was able to recite many of the phrases she typed on letters for Mr. Cheley.
Also during her college years, she met a young man from Erie, Colorado, Dudley Pitchford. They both graduated from Greeley in 1939. She took a teaching position in Sugar City, Colorado for 1 year, teaching several subjects to a variety of school grades. In May, 1941, Mildred and Dudley married at St. Francis de Sales church in Denver.
After Dudley’s service in the Army, they settled in Englewood with Dudley forming a new business partnership in office furniture and newspaper publishing, The Englewood Press. They were very active in St. Louis Parish activities, involving both the Church and the School. She was very proud of her activities with the School Bookroom program which she developed to assist all students in acquiring schoolbooks right at the school. Prior to this, parents had to go to the bookstore located in downtown Denver to purchase each student’s book for the year. It was a tremendous time-saver for all parents of the St. Louis School students.
She resumed teaching at St. Louis School in 1961, teaching 3rd graders. A few years later, she taught 6th grade, having some of the same students she’d previously taught.
The Englewood Press was growing and she often assisted with bookkeeping, bindery, clerking and inventory. Generally, just helped out where she was needed.
Her family was always a point of great pride to her. Jim and Don were the first to join the family and then after they bought their first house in Englewood in 1946 were joined by Marilyn, Norma and Ann.
When Dudley retired the couple enjoyed many trips and cruises. Among her favorites were their cruise through the Panama Canal and their trip to Korea in 1978. Other trips she enjoyed included Switzerland, Ireland, Hawaii, Alaska as well as many driving trips to see relatives coast to coast. She was very active in the parish organizations including the PTA, Altar and Rosary Society and St. Anne’s Circle. She enjoyed going to the Englewood Recreation Center for AquaExercise, and to the Malley Center for Quilting.
Millie was preceded in death by her siblings and husband, Dudley, grandson, Mark Duncan Pitchford and son-in-law John Robinson.
She is survived by her son Jim, and his wife Mary Anne; son Don and his wife Connie; and daughters Marilyn, Norma Robinson and Ann (Brian). Surviving grandchildren are: Karen Pitchford and her son Dylan Brown; Audrey and Greg Valenti; Susan and Michael Beaty and their sons Ben and Joey; Angela Pitchford and Bonnie Pitchford; Donald Pitchford and his sons Travis and Liam and daughter Adrienne; Julia and Ron Melnar and their son Brandon and daughter Mackenzie; Thomas Pitchford and his son Adam; Mark Duncan’s son Oliver; Ann Marie and Alex Miller and their daughters Piper and Bristol and son Logan; and Christine and Josiah Branson.
A recitation of the Rosary will be Thursday, February 22 at 9:00 am at St. Louis Catholic Church in Englewood, 3310 S. Sherman St. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 10:00 am. A reception will follow Mass at the Malley Senior Recreation Center in Englewood, 3380 S. Lincoln St.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Little Sisters of the Poor, Mullen Home for the Aged at 3629 W. 29th Ave., Denver, CO 80211-3601, or The Denver Hospice at 501 S. Cherry, Suite 700, Denver, CO 80246.