Mary Agatha (Anderson) Rogers was born on September 8, 1928 to James “Jim” Henrietta (Hoch) Anderson at their home 3 ½ miles south of Yuma, Colorado. She passed away on July 2, 2021 at the Harmony Home in Yuma, Colorado at the age of 93. Mary started first grade in the little country school that used to be five miles south of Yuma.
When the hordes of rabbits & dirt storms destroyed their crops, her dad, Jim started working at the Mustains Grocery Store in Yuma to provide for his wife and daughter. Many times during Mary’s first year of school when her mother saw the reddish-brown clouds start to appear in the southeast from Oklahoma, Henrietta would hitch up the team of horses to the wagon and go south a mile and a half to get Mary from school; then she and Mary would cover up with blankets in the wagon and head north to home. Giving the horses their heads, they always brought them safely home.
They moved into Yuma and Mary went to school there until the last half of the fifth grade when they moved back to their farm home. Mary started High School in Yuma, then her dad got a job in Wray, Colorado, at the courthouse. They lived there two years, They always moved in the middle of the school year – not always easy!!) Second semester of Mary’s junior year, they moved back to the farm at Yuma and Mary was happy to graduate with her class in 1946.
Mary went to Business School in Denver for a time, but didn’t like the city so she came home and got a job as a telephone operator at Mountain Bell Telephone office. It was while working at the phone company she went over to Kitzmiller’s Drug Store for a coke break. While there this bold young blue eyed farm boy from north of Yuma, set beside her and stole her car keys. He gave them back to her when she said she’d go out with him! His name was Francis Rogers they were married seven months later on January 1, 1949, the day before the infamous three day blizzard hit northeast Colorado and hit the tri-state area. A few months later they moved to the farm 3½ miles south of Yuma when her parents moved to their home in Yuma.
The first year of their marriage, they purchased one registered purebred Angus bull and ten registered purebred Angus cows. They decided to name their ranch “Wagon Wheel Ranch” and it is still known as that today. They also had a few registered Quarter Horses.
Mary and Francis Rogers were the parents of three children, MellaDee (Mark) Hagemann; Stanley (Deb) Rogers and Kenneth (Jody) Rogers. They also had a foster daughter for six years Robin Edigar (Ron) Baucke. Francis and Mary always enjoyed going to their children’s school, church and 4-H activities; also gymkhanas and camping with their horses in the mountains as well as other sightseeing trips. After the children went to college and were gone from home they had exchange students from about seven different countries visit and stay with them briefly (and that’s another story!!) in 1976 Mary and Francis flew to Europe to visit several of them and their families.
Mary inherited musical genes from both of her parents and music was always important in her life. As a Christian and longtime member of the First Presbyterian Church of Yuma, she was one of the church’s organists for over thirty years. She also played for weddings, funeral homes and at nursing homes and wherever. One friend said “God gave Mary the gift of playing by ear – because He knew she didn’t have time to practice!” Also as a member of the Old Threshers Group of Yuma, she’d take her keyboard and amplifier to play music for much of their yearly three day events.
When MellaDee was a senior in High School, Mary and Doris Spiers got together for the first time to play some numbers for the “famous” Senior Breakfast program which the parents put on to the embarrassment of their kids! Mary and Doris were “Partners In Crime” as they liked to call themselves (as it was a crime how they played!) They both played by ear and for over thirty years they played music together first, both on one piano; then piano and organ, then when keyboards came out, they both took them and played at fairs and wherever, making costumes to fit the occasions. Probably their best “Claim to Fame” was when they were hired to play for the Lipizzaner Stallions from Austria for two nights, when their show was in Sterling, Colorado. They made long white dresses for the occasion. They kept their tempo to match the horses doing their dressages. Some people “go to the dogs” a friend teased them by saying “You girls went to the horses”!
Mary worked briefly for Dick Dedrick at Yuma’s KJCO radio, doing the “Happenings Show” and was a volunteer for the American Cancer Society for many years. Mary was a travel agent for seventeen years, often Francis went along on group trips. Probably this urge to travel started as a small child when she and her dog “Toby” would take off just to see what was on the other side the hill. In later years, Mary thought this was shy she was an only child – why would her parents risk having more runaway children!!
Mary was always very proud of their three chidren and their accomplishments through the years. Then came their marriages and the very beautiful grandchildren and great grandchildren! Whenever health and other age related infirmities permitted, she and Francis always enjoyed going to any of their events that they could attend.
Mary was preceded in death by her husband, Francis, her parents and Francis’ parents, grandson, Tyler Mark Hagemann; granddaughter, Jessica Massey Robson; great grandson, Hayes Tyler Harrison;
Mary is survived by her children, MellaDee (Mark) Hagemann; Stanley (Deb) Rogers; and Kenny (Jody) Rogers; eight grandchildren, fourteen great grandchildren along with many other relatives and friends.
Memorial contributions are preferred they will include the First Presbyterian Church, The Yuma Museum, Old Threshers and the American Cancer society. The funeral service – Friday, July 9, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in Yuma, Colorado with Pastor Jamie Fiorino officiating. Interment follows at the Yuma Cemetery. Baucke Funeral Home directed the service.
To send flowers to Mary's family, please visit our floral store.