SPRING GLEN - Betty Lou Lander, 87, died peacefully at Castleview Hospital on Friday, Sept. 21, 2012.
She was born on Dec. 11, 1924, at the Oliver Coal Camp, near Paonia, Colo., to Chauncie and Vera Taylor. She was the first baby born at Oliver and Betty Lou was the oldest of seven children.
Betty Lou went to school in Colorado and graduated from Paonia High School. She met her future husband, Vopel Lander, in Grand Junction, Colo., while he was on leave from the U.S. Army during World War II. They were married in Grand Junction on June 1, 1942. Of this marriage were born two children, Vondell Mae, and Vopel Harry, Jr.
Betty Lou is survived by Vondell Temple; her great-grandchildren, Shawn and Sabrina Temple; granddaughter, Michelle Bruno; and great-grandchildren Jaycey and Kaylee, all of Price. Other survivors include Shirley Temple Smith and great-grandchildren Nicole Mae and Nakeysha Rae Temple, of Elmo; her sisters, Gail Tribolett, Lake Havasu, Ariz; Thelma Bailey, Somerset, Colo; and her brothers, Ted Taylor and Fuzzy Taylor, of Grand Junction.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Vopel; her son Vopel, Jr.; and two grandchildren, Valerie and Steven Temple; and son-in-law Bruce Temple.
Betty Lou was a charming, feisty lady all her life. In particular, she was a great champion of her daughter, Vondell, who was born with visual challenges. Betty Lou and Vopel made every effort to ensure that Vondell had the best education they could provide. Even though some people told them it was impossible for Vondell to take bookkeeping and computer classes, Betty Lou always helped Vondell find a way. "Her number one project was me," Vondell said.
After living and working in Sunnyside, Raton and Moab, the Landers settled down in Spring Glen in 1971. Betty Lou loved to sew, knit and make crafts.
Betty Lou chose not to have a funeral. Arrangements entrusted to Mitchell Funeral Home of Price where friends are welcome daily and may share memories of "Betty Lou" at www.mitchellfuneralhome.net.