Verlin Floyd Rockey made his journey to be with his precious Lord and Savior Tuesday March 21, 2017 at Horizons Care Center in Eckert, CO. He was 72 years of age.
Verlin was born April 21, 1944 in Monte Vista, CO to Floyd and Vera (Montgomery) Rockey. He spent his childhood in Center, CO where he graduated from Center High School with the class of 1962. After high school he attended The University of Colorado where he received a Bachelor’s of Science, Engineering Physics in June of 1967.
On June 27, 1965 Verlin married Diane DeLozier in Thomas, Oklahoma. This union was blessed with two children Craig and Petrina.
After graduating from the University of Colorado, Verlin worked at the White Sands Missile Range in Las Cruces, NM. While there, he lead a team of engineers that developed computer software for defense weapons such as the Patriot Missile.
Eventually Verlin grew tired of this career path and decided to return to his family farm in Center, CO. He brought his innovative thinking back to the farm with him. He was not afraid to stray from conventional methods of farming, and he was instrumental to introducing many specialty varieties of potatoes to the Russet dominated market. Fingerling potatoes in particular were first brought to the United States when Verlin decided to start growing them as certified seed potatoes in the San Luis Valley.
While in the San Luis Valley, Verlin served on many boards such as The Center Potato Growers, and The Colorado Certified Potato Growers Association, often serving as President. Verlin would later move to Powderhorn, CO and Austin, CO to continue growing certified seed potatoes, and to start raising garlic.
Verlin will be best remembered for his innovation, philosophical thoughts and kind heart. He touched many lives wherever he lived.
Verlin was a member of the Grand Mesa Southern Baptist Church as well as Campus Crusade for Christ. Memorial services were held on March 26th in Cedaredge, CO.
Mr. Rockey is survived by his wife of 51 years Diane Rockey of Austin, CO; son Craig (Dawna) Rockey of Austin, CO; daughter Petrina (Robert) Steward of Meridian, ID; one sister Loraine Campbell of Newburg, OR and 13 grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents Floyd and Vera Rockey and one brother Warren Rockey.