Hazel Gohr, age 97, of San Antonio, Tex. went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on the evening of January 26, 2019 as she was welcomed into her eternal home in Heaven.
Hazel Irene Harris was born June 28, 1921, near Frederick, Okla., the third child of William Earl and Orpha Antoinette Hazel (Garvin) Harris.
Hazel grew up on farms in Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Colorado. Her daddy was a tenant farmer. All of the children worked in the fields and garden, and the girls also had household chores. As the babies were born, each of the older children was assigned a younger child to take care of. When Hazel was ten years old, she became her brother John’s “baby tender.” Hazel commented that “although we were ‘poor’ and had to work hard, we didn’t feel deprived. Most of our friends and neighbors were in the same circumstances.” The family did not have electricity or indoor plumbing during Hazel’s childhood.
In her 97 plus years she lived through the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, World War II, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and 17 U.S. Presidents, as well as contemporary events. Her dad, our Grandpa Harris, moved his whole family from Oklahoma to West Texas in January 1927, and finding things just as tough to provide for the family there, he moved them on to Utah in March 1935. It was a long, hard trip in the back of an old converted farm truck that Granny Harris had made into a covered home for the trip. The family cooked alongside the road. The final destination was Bug Point, San Juan County, UT on the Colorado-Utah border near Dove Creek, Colo. Shortly before her 17th birthday, Hazel graduated from Dove Creek High School in 1938 in the same class with her older brother, Billy.
From 1939-1940, Hazel worked as the librarian for the Dove Creek Public Library. Then she attended Fort Lewis College at Hesperus and roomed with her younger sister, Ruby Jean. She taught school at Rico, Colo. one summer while attending Fort Lewis College. She also taught at Dove Creek before attending Adams State College in Alamosa, where she graduated in 1949. There she met her husband, Lawrence Robert Gohr, who was from Monte Vista. After graduation she taught in La Plata, NM for one year.
Hazel and Lawrence were married on June 14, 1950 at Dove Creek, Colorado. They lived for a couple months in Monte Vista, and that fall they moved to Antonito, Colorado for a year. The next summer they moved to Fort Collins, Colorado for Lawrence to take graduate courses in Industrial Arts. Their first daughter, Margie, was born in Fort Collins. That fall the Gohrs moved to Boone, Colorado, where Lawrence had a job teaching Industrial Arts at a high school. The Gohrs moved to Cheyenne, Wyoming in July 1952 where Lawrence worked as a civilian at Warren Air Force Base. Sons Fred and Glenn were both born in Cheyenne. They moved to Wichita Falls, Tex. in August 1958, where Lawrence worked as a civilian at Sheppard Air Force Base. Their daughter Alice was born soon after they moved to Texas. The Gohrs raised their family in Wichita Falls where Hazel made sure that each of her children received a well-rounded education which included scouting, piano lessons, dance lessons, swimming lessons, community and church activities, etc. They were longtime members of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Wichita Falls.
The Gohrs enjoyed retirement in Wichita Falls for a few years before they decided to move back to Monte Vista, Colo. in 1980 to help care for Lawrence’s mother. They bought a permanent home there in 1982. One important accomplishment was when Hazel learned to drive for the first time in 1983, at the age of 61. The Gohrs were very active in St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Monte Vista and celebrated 50 years of marriage with a reception at the church. After 53 years of marriage, Lawrence passed away in March 2004. Hazel continued living in Monte Vista for a few years before moving to San Antonio, Tex. in 2008 to live in an apartment near her daughter, Margie. In the spring of 2014 she moved into the home of Margie and Jimmy Bartell who then became her caregivers.
Hazel is remembered for her faithfulness to her family, her church, friends, and the community. She enjoyed gardening, sewing and quilting. Hazel spent hours making quilts not only for family and friends, but also for the needy. Hazel was treasurer of the Mary Martha Society at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Wichita Falls and also managed a Christian card store at her church in Monte Vista. She belonged to Ladies Aid, the Jolly Neighbors, the San Luis Valley Quilt Guild, and the Tri County Senior Citizens group in Monte Vista. She also assisted for 21 years with weekly services for the shut-ins at Mountain Meadows Nursing Center. Hazel always enjoyed reading and liked to write short stories which she contributed to Capper’s Weekly and other publications. She is remembered for her cinnamon rolls, homemade whole wheat bread, pies, cookies, and other recipes, which were always made from scratch. She also gladly shared meals with many a house guest, including airmen in Wichita Falls which the family often invited over for a home-cooked meal. Hazel maintained friendships and wrote many letters to friends and family far and wide. She also strived to attend family gatherings. She was a strong Christian influence on all our lives, and we will greatly miss her.
Hazel was preceded in death by her husband, Lawrence, parents William Earl and Orpha Harris, son Fred, brothers Bill, J. D., John, and Thurman, and sisters, Lucile Semadeni, Ruby Jean Barber, and Betty Lou Waterman. She is survived by three children, Margery (Jimmy) Bartell of San Antonio, TX, Glenn (Marion) Gohr of Springfield, MO, and Alice (Mike) Kettner of Jacob, IL. She is also survived by 9 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren and one on the way, as well as many nieces and nephews, cousins, and friends.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm on Saturday, February 2 at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, 1821 Grand Ave., Monte Vista, Colo. A graveside service will follow in the Monte Vista Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions can be made to St. Peter’s Lutheran School, 330 Faraday Street, Monte Vista, CO 81144 or Christ Lutheran School, 146 W. Jacob Rd., Jacob, IL 62950.
Rogers Family Mortuary of Monte Vista is in care of the arrangements. To leave online condolences, tributes and remarks for Hazel’s family, please visit www.RogersFunerals.com