Joan M. Bittenbinder, 75, died unexpectedly Feb. 15, 2006. Born May 24, 1930, in Wadena, Minn. to parents Paul and Florence (Kripps) Koch, who preceded her in death. Survived by her husband, Frank R. Bittenbinder of the family home in Pueblo West, Colo.; children, James (Dianne) Bittenbinder of Fairmont, Minn., Susan (Art) Yamamoto of Corrales, N.M., Kay (Barry) Porter of Franklin, Va., Teresa (John) Erickson and Michael Bittenbinder; and former daughter-in-law, Tracy Fontecchio, mother of grandchildren Jessica, Dylan and Colton Bittenbinder, all of Pueblo West. Also survived by grandchildren, Ryan and Nicholas Bittenbinder of Minnesota and Maxwell Erickson of Pueblo West. Survived by siblings John (Annette) Koch of Pequot Lakes, Minn., Mary Lou Hammes of Peoria, Ill., Robert (Jordie) Koch of Bandera, Texas, Pauline (Bill) Bridges of Minneapolis, Minn., Paul (Judy) Koch Jr. of Wright, Minn., Charles (Sigrid) Koch of Columbus, Ind., Kathleen (LeRoy Sr.) Gielen of Deer River, Minn. and Joseph Koch of Rochester, Minn., as well as many nieces, nephews and other relatives. Preceded in death by her sons, John (1989) and Donald (1998) Bittenbinder; and brother, James Anthony 'Tony' Koch (Vietnam 1968). Joan was an active member of St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church in P.W. and enjoyed singing in choirs. She was a member of Daughters of Isabella and a life member of VFW Auxiliary. Joan attended St. Cloud State College (Minn.) for 2 years and was a graduate of Dakota Business College, Fargo N.D. She was employed at Shirly Onstead of Fargo, N.D. and later at the hospital in Dickinson, N.D. In Colorado she worked in the food department of School District 70 in P.W. for 11 years. Joan was a devoted loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and daughter, and will be sorely missed by many. At her request, cremation, no viewing or funeral. Montgomery and Steward Crematorium. Memorial Mass to be announced at later date. Cremains to be interred at Ft. Lyon National Cemetery. Online condolences,

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  1. Joan will be deeply missed. I thought of her as my “sunshine” cousin because she smiled all the time.

  2. Dear Frank & family,
    We are still in shock at the news. Joan’s quiet, caring, generous spirit will be missed by all of us at S.E.T. and by the clients that she helped serve.

  3. Dear Frank, children, spouses and grand children,
    We feel for you and are also sad to
    lose Joan.

  4. Dear Frank..we were very sadden to read about your wife’s leaving for heaven. Her memories will give you the strength to help the family in this unhappy time.You are in our prayers. Elke & Frank

  5. Dear Mike,
    We are so sorry to read of your Mom’s death. She was a lovely lady, much to be admired. One of the earliest Pueblo West residents.
    With tremendous sympathy,
    Carl and Joy Vining

  6. Frank, I am very sorry to learn of your loss. I know first hand the shock and sadness you are feeling. While I didn’t really know Joan, she was always pleasnt and cheerful when I was around her. Please accept my deepest sympathy and the hope that God will give you his supernatural peace in this time of grief. Blessings-Tom Tucker

  7. It’s hard to understand why people are taken from us, but find comfort in knowing you were a special part of a well-lived life.

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