Kris Borchard passed away on Aug. 6, 2011, at her home in Meeker, surrounded by her family, following a 16-month battle with cancer.Kristin Ann Olson entered this world Feb. 17, 1946, the second of four children born to Glenn and Dorothy Olson of Jackson, Minn. She was the namesake of Kirsti Slaabakken who homesteaded the family farm when she came to America in 1850. It was on this very farm Kris grew up and learned the values of hard work, honesty, self-reliance and nurturing. She attended a one-room country schoolhouse until fifth grade, after which she rode one hour by bus to the Jackson Public Schools where she was graduated as salutatorian in 1963. Kris participated and excelled in band, choir, cheerleading, drama, 4-H and National Honor Society. Kris attended Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., from 1963-1967, and was graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in medical technology. While in high school, Kris met the love of her life, Kent Borchard. They were married on June 12, 1966, in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, where Kris had also been baptized and confirmed. After Kent and Kris were graduated from college, they moved to Ann Arbor, Mich., where Kris worked for Parke Davis Research, supporting Kent while he attended law school. They started their family in Michigan, moved to Boulder, Colo., where Kent started his law practice, and settled there for the next 12 years. While in Boulder three more children joined the family. In 1981, the opportunity arose to move the family to Meeker, Colo. They opened a law practice, where Kris was Kent’s “right-hand man” and, occasionally, his left. Their family was complete in 1986 with the birth of their third son.Kris’ life was defined by her love for God, family, church, friends and community. As her children were growing up, she was actively involved in their activities, following them many miles as they participated in school events. This was a practice she later continued with her grandchildren, who lovingly called her “Toto.” Kris was an active member of the Meeker United Methodist Church, served on the church council and Pastor Parish Relations committee and helped build the music program for young and old alike through choir, performances and many beautiful musicals. Kris loved spending time with her good friends playing cards, traveling and entertaining both at home and at “The Black Bear Inn,” the special getaway she created with Kent. Kris also served as a member of the school and hospital boards and organized the 9 News Health Fair. She volunteered for school activities, sang in the community choir and was a participant with her grandchildren in the annual Meeker pageant held on the fourth of July.Kris’ passion for nurturing and for the medical field culminated in her becoming an EMT in 1986. From there she found her niche, becoming an EMT-Intermediate and the ambulance director quickly thereafter. She expanded this to educating and training countless other EMTs and first responders. Many of her students continue to serve as EMTs and firefighters in the Meeker community today. In addition to serving locally, she served on RETAC, a committee helping to provide emergency services beyond Rio Blanco County. Those close to Kris frequently witnessed her instinctual response to her pager whether or not she was on call.Kris was preceded in death by her parents, Glenn Ellsworth Olson and Dorothy Marie Larson Olson. She is survived by Kent, her loving husband of 45 years, and her children, Kellie Turner (Coley), Karrin Mezarina (Al), Kevin (Hanna), Kristofer (fiancee Janelle Pope) and Koley; eight grandchildren, Casey, Kenzie, Kelton, Natalie, Dominic, Tristan, Melissa and Fernando; and siblings Karen Knoflicek (Bill), Solveig Nay (Darold) and Mark Olson (Lori). Friends and family are invited to attend a memorial service on Friday, Aug. 12, 2011, at 10 a.m. at Meeker United Methodist Church, 809 Park Ave., Meeker, Colo. Interment will be at Highland Cemetery. Following interment, there will be a Celebration of Life luncheon at the Fairfield Center around 11:30 a.m. Memorial donations can be sent to the Kris Borchard Memorial Fund, c/o Meeker United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 26, Meeker, CO 81641.Kris’ humble love for her family, friends and community, combined with her enthusiasm for life, were contagious to everyone she met. She leaves behind innumerable friends and family who mourn her passing.
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