Jesse Eugene Retherford

Retherford Enlargephoto


Jesse Eugene Retherford was born Jan. 27, 1924, to Henry and Mary Retherford in Stillwater, Okla. He went to be with the love of his life on April 22, 2013. He was 89.

Born in Oklahoma, his family moved to Pleasant View, Colo., where he grew up and graduated. He then enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served in World War II from 1941 to 1947. After moving back to Pleasant View and working various jobs, he started a band, "Gene Retherford and the Hollywood Trio."

It wasn't long before he met and married Vivian Joye Schafer. They were married Sept. 2, 1950. They had Dennis Retherford in 1951 and Doug Retherford in 1952, both in Cortez. They moved to Monticello, Utah, where he worked for the uranium mill. In 1957, they moved to Fruita, Colo., where he worked for Gilsonite & Gary Refinery for 24 years. In 1958, they had Terry Retherford, and five years later, in 1963, they adopted their daughter, Lori Ann Retherford.

Jesse always put his family first and was at his happiest when outside on family camping trips, fishing, hunting and family reunions at Lake Powell, Flaming Gorge, Mesa Lakes or anywhere the family could all be together and he could sing and play the guitar with family and friends. He loved his golf, gym and walking; it kept him busy and vibrant. He lived life to the fullest.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Mary; his wife, Vivian; his brothers, Kenneth, Ted and Ray Retherford; and his grandson, Ricky Erb. He is survived by his sons, Dennis (Kathy) Retherford of Cortez, Doug Retherford of Grand Junction, and Terry (Brenda) Retherford of Grand Junction; his daughter, Lori Ann (Rocky) Erb of Grand Junction, 11 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild.