Mabel Joyce Collette Kechter, or Sue as most knew her, age 87, died from a severe stroke on Saturday, June 8, 2019 in Yuma, Colorado with family at her side.
Sue was the youngest of five siblings, born September 25, 1931 in Idalia, Colorado to Ralph and Alva Collette. She attended elementary at Red Top School and graduated from Kirk High School in 1949. She enjoyed working at the Kirk State Bank and the Kirk Store prior to marrying Bill Kechter, Jr. at Jack and Ruth Wise’s farm on December 15, 1950. The couple lived on the Kechter Ranch southwest of Kirk throughout their entire sixty-eight and a half years of marriage. The couple brought four children into the union, Kent, Kurt, Bob, and Marla.
Sue valued faith, family, and friends. It was at the time her boys were young that she realized her own need for salvation and desired a personal relationship with Jesus. In 1961, she gave her life to Christ and was then baptized and joined the Kirk Baptist Church. Sue had a servant heart and nourished others with love, music, and of course, food. Sitting at Sue’s table for a meal was always a treat as she was a fantastic cook and loved to bake. She was happy to share her recipes, but no one could make the same dish quite like her; beef and noodles, meringue pies, and the absolute best chocolate chip cookies ever made. Upon entering the Kechter home, it was typical to rush right to the cookie jar for some of Grandma Sue’s Cookies.
In addition to caring for her family, she helped feed the cattle, taught Sunday School, and even taught herself to play the piano when Marla was young. She spent hours at the piano or organ, sometimes playing and sometimes listening as her daughter played and the family sang. She enjoyed taking morning and evening walks, working in her flower garden, and loved to watch game shows in the evening hours. She and Bill greatly enjoyed travelling and made many good friends through their travel adventures. Together they visited 47 states, including Alaska and Hawaii, as well as international travel to England, Scotland, Wales, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, and the Caribbean.
Sue is survived by her husband, Bill, son Kent and Marsha of Saint Francis, Kansas, and their family—Shara and Jason Johnson, Lauren, Lindsey and Emma; Amber and Mat Brown, Rhett; Travis and Jill Kechter, Madelyn and Abigail; son Kurt and Janelle of Fort Collins, Colorado and their family—Joseph Kechter; Derek Smith; Domenic Carpine, Isaac, Nathaniel, Katie, and Anna; son Bob and Brenda of Kirk and their family—Candice and Christopher Monahan, Bode and Ryker; Toby and Brianne Kechter, Jaylyn, Gabriel, Skyler, and Ella; Kay Dee and Ty’Ray Thompson, Tyce, T’Ziah, and Taya; her brother Bud and sister-in-law Bernie Collette of Burlington, and a host of nieces, nephews, family and friends.
Sue was proceeded in death by her parents, Ralph and Alva Collette; siblings Ruth Wise, Ed Collette, and James Collette; her daughter Marla Jo Kechter; granddaughter Johanna Carpine; brother-in-law Jack Wise; sister-in-laws Leona Collette, Nadine Collette, and Marilyn Wood; and mother and father-in-law Bill and Lola Kechter.
Memorial services will be held Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at 10:30 am at the Liberty School. Interment will follow at the Kirk Cemetery.
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