Jane Marie (Keeler) Austin

Jane Marie (Keeler) Austin 87, passed away on March 15, 2014. A 48-year resident of Durango, Colo., Jane was born in October 1926 in Cortez, Colo., to Rex and Bertha Keeler. The family moved to Lewis, north of Cortez, where Jane grew up on a farm and attended Lewis Elementary. Jane rode her horse to Garret Ridge High School for two years. During her junior and senior years, she boarded in Cortez. Shortly after graduating from Cortez, Jane started teaching in a two-room school at McFee, Colo., which is now buried by McFee Reservoir. After World War II, ended Jane rode the Galloping Goose to Montrose and continued on to Gunnison, Colo., to attend Western State College. There Jane met a tall,x handsome GI from Texas named Edmund Austin. They eloped and married in Montrose, Colo., in December 1948. During their 66 years of marriage, Jane had four children and many wonderful adventures with her family. She received her degree in Elementary Education from Adam State College in Alamosa, Colo. She taught in Ridgeway, Salida and Pagosa Springs, Colo., and Moab, Utah, before moving to Durango, where she was a well-loved teacher for many years at Riverview Elementary. Jane loved nothing more than exploring new places, summers and weekends were spent jeeping and camping all over America, Canada and Mexico. She was the kindest and most considerate people you’d ever know and will be sorely missed.

Jane is survived by her husband, Edmund Kearney Austin; daughters Kathleen K. Austin and Mary Jane Austin of Durango; son, Richard Ray Austin of Farmington, N.M.; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews, cousins and extend family.

Jane was preceded in death by her son, Edmund Lee Austin of Durango, parents Rex and Bertha Keeler of Lewis, sisters Eileen Campbell of Cortez and Carolyn Wagoner of Albuquerque, and brother Richard Keeler of Cortez.

A memorial service for Jane will be held Saturday May 3, 2014, at First United Methodist Church, 2917 Aspen Drive, Durango, Colorado, at 10 a.m.