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RANGELY | Jim and Donna Kennis of Rangely are this week’s “home of” honorees. They retired in 2000 and moved to Rangely in 2001. Jim and Donna were high school sweethearts. Their parents advised them to wait to get married. Donna attended college and became a teacher. Jim joined the Air Force. They both married other people. They met again at their 35th high school reunion in Phillipsburg, Kans., and were married a week later on June 4, 1994.
Jim was in the Air Force for 25 years. He retired in 1984 and went to work for Boeing in Seattle, Wash. Donna was a junior high math and science teacher for 26 years.
“We moved to Rangely after we retired as we were trying to find a town located between our kids, grandchildren and great-grandchildren who live in San Antonio, Texas, and Seattle, Wash., as well as my mother in San Antonio and Jim’s mother in Phillipsburg. My cousin Shirley Sinclair lives in Rangely, so we decided to move here. It was a good decision. Grace Baptist Church and our neighbors on Ridge Road, the Rushers, Adamses and Stewarts have been our family. Due to Jim’s health problems our church and neighbors have pitched in. Our pastor Thad Noyes has been wonderful. The Webber family and other church families have made sure these past few years that our yard is mowed and snow is plowed and our neighbors have brought us meals. I also want to mention that five years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. At that time there was a fund set up at the bank for people in need, but there was no money in it. I mentioned this to Lynda Cady and her mother Donna Stewart and Lynda suggested we start one. We set up ‘Rangely Cares, Rangely Shares’, a non-profit, four years ago and have fundraisers to give money to people in need, mostly for health reasons,” Donna explained.
Jim and Donna have seven children: Debbie Gilbert of El Paso, Texas; Kay Hinkle of Seattle, Wash,; Jennifer Stotts lives in Germany; Debbie Shadlow of Tacoma, Wash.; James Kennis of Seattle; Tony Boone of San Antonio; and Dell Boone of Austin, Texas. They also have 12 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
“From the wonderful neighbors, the hospital to the people on the street the people here are great. The closeness, their helpfulness, no matter what, they are always there. Rangely is now our home,” Donna added.