Vickie Dorine LaVan

vickie lavan

September 15, 1936 ~ October 17, 2018

Resided in: Pueblo, Colorado

Vickie Dorine LaVan, 82, Passed Away October 17, 2018. Survived by Daughters, Lorna (Bruce) Elmer and Kimberly (Jeff) Kirkwood; Former spouse and Father of her children, Ron LaVan; Grandson, Timothy Elmer; Granddaughter, Amanda Elmer; Grandson, Jacob Kirkwood; Sister, Vangie (Al) Fitterer; Brother, Vernon (Geri) Wanner; Brother-in-law, Duane Aman; Former Sister-in-law, Shirley Wanner Raile; Many nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends; and Her beloved dog, Sophie. Preceded in Death by Parents, Philip and Emma Wanner; Brother, Wilbert Wanner; Sisters, Agnes (Duane) Aman and Inez (Roger) Becker; Brother-in-law Roger Becker; and Niece Veronica Wanner. Vickie was born to Philip and Emma (Schaeffer) Wanner in Wishek, ND on September 15, 1936. Vickie, given the birth name of Violet, was raised on a farm in North Dakota. She was born a strong, independent soul and quickly grew discontented with the requirements of farm life that were placed on her, including leaving high school to help raise her younger siblings. She left home as a teenager to pursue her education and other aspirations. She joined the U.S. Air Force at age 18, made Pueblo her home in 1959, and eventually graduated from the University of Southern Colorado School of Nursing in 1968 while working and raising her two young daughters. She worked as a state employee for 32 years at the Colorado State Hospital, primarily as a unit leader at Pueblo Regional Center. After retiring from her job with the state, she worked for a Home Health Care agency in Pueblo for a brief time. Always a proud nurse at heart, she kept up her nursing license with the state through 2011, prepared to take up the call if needed. Vickie was always at her best when helping others, including animals. She could never resist offering her home to a stray cat or dog. She was even providing food and care to a family of feral cats over the last several years. Her constant companion was her dog, Sophie, who has been lovingly adopted by friends. She was preceded in death by her previous soul companions Brandy and Bunny, two poodles very dedicated to their mom. Vickie thoroughly enjoyed her retirement, her primary hobbies being gardening, food preparation (particularly canning and baking), and travel to places near and far. Vickie's love of food and feeding those she loved was present in all aspects of her life, and in true Pueblo tradition she made a mean green chile. Christmas, her favorite time of year, was when her passion for food really flourished. She loved preparing her family's favorite German baked goods, salsa and pickles from her garden, and Christmas dinner with the works to share with her family as they gathered at her home -- the anchor point for every Christmas. She was also an avid television fan and newspaper reader, enjoying these activities from her trusty recliner. The strength of will she was born with followed her to the end of her life as she survived a number of major health issues, including a lung cancer diagnosis in 2000. Despite growing weary and more ill over the past couple of years, she maintained her independence and her will to live her life as she wanted. Her love of and appreciation for her family seemed to grow stronger even as she grew weaker. We invite everyone to celebrate Vickie's life and spirit. Member of King of Kings Lutheran Church In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to 1) the COPD Foundation (; 2) Sangre de Cristo Hospice (, in support of Hospice House; or 3) Humane Society of Pikes Peak Region ( Cremation, Montgomery & Steward Crematorium. Service, 2 p.m. Friday, Oct. 26, at King of Kings Lutheran Church, 2561 Vinewood Lane, Pueblo. Online condolences,

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Memories Timeline


  1. My condolences to Vickys family. I had the pleasure of working with her and found her yo be a very caring and inspirational lady. Rest in peace my friend.

  2. Aunt Vickie, what a cool, fierce, independent, adventurous lady you were. You were a rare gift to the world and you will be so missed! I wish we could have spent more time together. We will remember you always. Rest in peace.

  3. Lorna and Kim and families; Prayers for your peace and comfort as you remember that Vickie has found her place in our Father’s house. God bless,

  4. Lorna and Kim; I am praying that you find peace knowing what a beautiful place your mom is in. I always enjoyed visits with her when she came up to see mom and dad. I admired how, “spirited,” she was and felt a true connection to her in that regard. Free from all the pain a new journey for her has just begun and what a beautiful one it will be. God Bless, all my love

  5. Lorna and Kim and Families; I am so sad for you, and send love and prayers to you all. Your Mom was an absolute hoot! I always enjoyed her visits; her sassy attitude, her ever present wit, and her eyes that always danced. She was incredibly interesting to talk to. While I know your hearts hurt and you are so sad right now, we all were blessed to have and know her in any capacity. She and Mom both had such a love of their profession, and such a talent for caring for people. I hope they are enjoying being with each other again in our Father’s promised land. Much love to you all.

  6. I pray you all find peace and comfort during this difficult time ~ Our mother’s are in a more beautiful place with each other ~ May God Bless you all.

  7. Mom, the house feels so empty without you; your presence made it so full. We wander from room to room seeing all the things and ways you choose to make your house a home. We miss the love, the laughter, the tears, the joy, your smile, your generosity, your baking and cooking. (Yes, it really IS all about the food, farm girl!) We miss you so much.
    Thank you for fighting to stay with us all these years. We love you. Now, go breathe, run, and frolic. Be free.
    Lorna, Bruce, Timothy & Amanda

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