Marvin James Stoker 1931-2017
Marvin J. Stoker passed away February 21, 2017, at Collier Hospice Center in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. A private graveside service will be held at Mountain View Cemetery in Longmont, Colorado, in early summer.
Marvin was born June 7, 1931, in Valdez, Colorado, one of many small company owned mining towns located in Colorado's immense southern coalfield. From a young age, Marvin's father, Alexander Stoker, marched daily into the earth and Marvin's mother, Margaret (Clark) Stoker, spent her days managing the home and raising her children in the numerous dusty, isolated coal camps in which the family lived. The Stoker/Clark families were both steeped in southern Colorado coal mining history, and although children grew up quickly in the camps, Marvin always enjoyed sharing stories and memories of a pleasant and adventurous childhood.
Eventually, the family moved to Walsenburg, Colorado, where Marvin graduated from Huerfano County High School in 1949. Next, the family moved to Pueblo, Colorado, where Marvin attended Pueblo Junior College.
While in Pueblo, Marvin met and married Betsey (Provines) Stoker, and from this union had one child, Penney (Stoker) Varner. In 1957, the couple moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado, where Marvin was employed by Holly Sugar Corporation for 39 years. After retiring from his position as Office Services Manager, Marvin and Betsey enjoyed traveling, including trips to Alaska, Canada, Greece, Ireland, Scotland, England, Germany, and Central America.
In 1998, to be near their daughter and son in law, the couple moved to Rawlins, where Marvin enjoyed fishing; hiking; card games; exploring Wyoming history; activities and travel sponsored by the Senior Center, Recreation Center, and the Rawlins National Bank Heritage Club; but mostly, the many wonderful friends he met in Rawlins.
In an unexpected turn of fate, glaucoma took Marvin's sight and he spent the final ten years of his life boldly facing the challenges of being blind. Courageously, Marvin always maintained his dignity, keen sense of humor, and worked hard to preserve his independence. He found support and comfort from his many kind, patient, and loving caregivers; and Penney, his ever admiring daughter who was always by his side.
An inspiration, Marvin will always be remembered for his gentle but firm manner and his unconditional love. He was a wonderful husband, an amazing father, and will be forever missed.
Marvin was preceded in death by his wife of 58 years, Betsey; parents, Alexander and Margaret Stoker; infant brother, Alex Stoker; and brother and sister in law, William and Doris Jean Stoker. He is survived by his daughter Penney (Stoker) Varner (John) of Encampment; brother, Dale Stoker of Pueblo, Colorado; nephew, Karol Stoker (Cindy Ramthun) of Longmont, Colorado; nieces Jeannine (Stoker) Belson of Denver, Colorado; Colleen (Stoker) Harvey (Scott) of Kennewick, Washington; and Laura Stoker of Pueblo, Colorado.