Obituary of Brenda Lee Echols
Brenda Lee Kelly, 80, passed away on May 27, 2023 at Riverbend Health and Rehabilitation Center in Loveland, Colorado. Brenda was born on January 24, 1943 in Alamosa, Colorado to Joseph Hanmer Kelly and Ida Mae (Meck) Kelly and grew up in the small town of La Jara, Colorado.
Brenda graduated from La Jara High School in 1962 and worked prior to serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the South America Andes mission for almost 2 ½ years. She began her service in Lima, Peru and later became one of the first four sister missionaries to serve in Bolivia.
Upon her return, Brenda married Clarke Fred Echols, Sr, of Manassa, Colorado, on July 15, 1966, in the Logan Utah temple. They resided in Alamosa until shortly after the birth of their second child in 1968 when they relocated to Loveland (Colorado) where they built their home and raised their large family. Together they had 9 children.
Brenda always loved serving the Lord through various callings in church. Brenda touched many lives through her service and was loved dearly by all who knew her. She was a faithful visiting teacher to dear friends from church and cherished the friendships she made with the many women to whom she ministered. She was a wonderful example of Christ like love and had a fun and unique sense of humor. For many years she often strove to teach her children Spanish by her favorite phrases “Ciérrate la boca!” and “Apúrate!” She was only ever known to make one mistake in her life, or thus were her children keen to observe through her reminder to them, “First mistake I ever made!”
Brenda’s nine children and many grandchildren kept her very busy. When she was able to find time for herself, she enjoyed reading, sewing, crocheting, and gardening. She enjoyed making her yard beautiful and had the best strawberry patch. Brenda chose not to attend college; however, she was diligent in reading and studying throughout her life about any topic that she wanted to better understand and learn.
Brenda was preceded in death by her brother Joseph, and recently by her husband, Clarke, of 56 years, who passed away on December 20, 2022. Brenda is survived by her children Sonja (Richard) Gage, Lona Lassner, Clarke Echols Jr., Kirsten (Frank) Yang, Benjamin (Melissa) Echols, Samuel Echols, Jacob Echols, Annelise (Howard) Wakkinen, and Joseph Echols as well as sixteen grandchildren and fourteen great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her siblings Mary Lou, Robert, Priscilla, Jack, Rona and Marvin, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Clarke and Brenda will be buried at the Sanford Cemetery in the San Luis Valley on June 9, 2023. A memorial service will be held for both Clarke and Brenda on Saturday, June 10th at 11:00 a.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located at 3800 Mountain Lion Drive in Loveland, Colorado. Condolences may be offered at www.viegutfuneralhome.com.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Brenda Echols , please visit Tribute Store