94yrs of a life well lived, this gentle, kind lady, Vernita (Vernie) Volle Carroll, passed into heaven surrounded by her family at home the evening of May 18, 2021 following a battle with dementia in the last 5-6yrs of life. She is survived by her husband Luther (Louie), son Duane and daughters Kathy and Lori as well as one surviving sibling, Alvin Volle of Portland Oregon and numerous nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by brothers Arthur, Edward, and Norman Volle and one sister Wilma Volle Strueh.
Mom was never afraid of change. In fact, embraced it with joy, enthusiasm, and kindness. Always willing to try something new with a genuine smile on her face. She was generous and funny without ever trying. That was the best part; she authentically never realized how funny she was. It was just her. She always made the choice to look for the good in everyone, every event, and forgive with a thankful heart. She was a friend to all having courage, enthusiasm, and faith.
She was born into a farm family in Westphalia Indiana, the eldest of 6 siblings on August 7, 1926. The family was surrounded by a large extended family in the region; Volle and Sander. This extended family remained close to her heart, bringing her own family to visit throughout her life. Many of her aunts, uncles and cousins received her devoted attention. Earning her nursing degree at Deaconess Hospital School of Nursing in Evansville IN, she then served in the Nurse Cadet Corp during the end of WWII. In the late 1940’s, she enjoyed public health nursing in Indianapolis. In 1950 she traveled to Denver at the age of 24 with her young son Duane where she had the courage to leave a bad situation and provide for the 2 of them. After working a shift at St. Luke’s Hospital, she returned to the apartment, packed one bag and with Duane in tow, crossed Broadway St. in search of a place to live ultimately residing in what is now the Platt Park Neighborhood. She was blessed with Angels that guided her during those years towards the warm and open kindness of the Honisch family who quite literally became a second family to her and Duane. An introduction by Duane at the age of 4 or 5yrs, brought together Vernie and Louie for a marriage of 65yrs minus 2 mos. Two daughters, Kathy and Lori were born creating a family of 5. She took time away from nursing to raise her family; was active in her church, school activities, camping and tended a large backyard garden continuing her mother’s gift for canning fresh vegetables. The sense of service and community of her church, the United Church of Christ, was important to her. She loved the music despite the fact she could not carry a tune. But that did not matter to her, singing away. She involved herself at the local and national levels of the church and remained engaged till the last few years of life.
Returning to nursing in the mid 70’s; she met two other nurses that together pioneered the formation of Hospice of Metro Denver officially in 1978. Mom is the last of the original 3 enterprising and dedicated women who saw a human need that has now grown to be Denver Hospice. Of this accomplishment she was most proud and received many many notes of gratitude from the people she touched. During those early years, the individual nurses provided 24/7 personal availability to their patients often leaving their homes in the middle of the night to tend to persons and their families. These folks are truly angels.
Retirement provided increased opportunity for traveling across the US; something that she and Dad instilled in the family at an early age. We would visit family across the country; learn about all the different people and their ways of life and respect and love the beautiful land. This is what they taught us…… Ten years were spent as “snowbirds” in their 5th wheel trailer in Yuma AZ. Mom became shuffleboard queen of their park and together they enjoyed the company of all those folks down there, hiking, biking, and traveling. Friends and family often visited during these winter months to enjoy the warmth. In 2001, returning to Denver year-round she fought and beat a battle with breast cancer at the age of 75.
In her later years, she would tell us kids to always learn and grow for this provides energy and joy to life. She survived the tough times of life through a special spirit of loving on people with a ready smile. Throughout Mom’s life, she has been told by others that she is surrounded by Angels of her family past and we think we can honestly say that we have felt their presence. And now, she has become one of those angels to help guide and be present to all those she loves on this earth. May we always remember and cherish her authentic, enthusiastic smile, her belief in forgiveness, her welcoming of people and the courage she had to embrace change and open doors. Her gentleness is but a part of all the joy her graces bring.
The family thanks you for your kindness to Vernita throughout the years and now to her family. Please join in celebrating a life well lived on June 2nd at 11:30am Salem United Church of Christ, 5300 E. Florida Ave., Denver with a small lunch and ice cream bar following in her honor. Ice cream was her favorite. Burial will follow at Fort Logan Cemetery at 2:30 pm, 4400 W. Kenyon Ave (South of Hampden at Sheridan Blvd). On-line guest book / tribute wall available. In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to Salem United Church Christ or Denver Hospice in Vernita’s name.
(Obituary provided by the Carroll family)