Saturday, July 31, 2021

Saying Goodbye to David

Charlotte w/ Doyle, Ken w/ David
David Allen Russell, age 57, has passed away. He lived his life in Massachusetts but many summers he came to Colorado to visit his grandparents Doyle and Frances Russell. His father, Kenneth Russell, was their oldest child and about every other year Ken brought the boys out to his parents' farm in Larimer County, Colorado, for a couple of weeks or so, and on the off years David and Doyle (named for his grandfather) went to Pennsylvania to be with their mother's relatives.

Robert Russell is David's uncle and neither he nor I ever visited the family in Lexington, Massachusetts, so all of our memories of David take place here in Colorado. That's what I will write about.


Ken holding David, Charlotte with Doyle


David was born February 28, 1964 and first visited Colorado the summer of 1966. His brother was a little over a year old that summer and old enough to travel. These photos were taken during that visit. I don't know if there was a baby bed set up or if Ken and family shared a bed in his old room upstairs in his parents' modest home. I do know those stairs to the upstairs rooms were steep and narrow.

By the next visit the boys had girl cousins to play with and their grandpa provided them with kiddie cars, tricycles, and plenty of places to explore. 

Angie, Cyndee, Doyle and David




Doyle, Ken, David





 Doyle, Angie, David, Cyndee




 Doyle and David, June 1976















Frances cooked delicious meals for her grandsons, taught them canasta, introduced them to chocolate popcorn, and loved them dearly. She traveled back to Lexington almost every year to stay with them and their dad.


Doyle, David, and Doyle



David on Pal





Doyle and David




Cyn, Doyle, Angie, David, Pat



Angie, Cyndee, David













David with little chickens






David with gopher?







David with a pet dog on top of hay bales



the boys boxing








Grandpa Doyle always had work for the boys, sometimes roof repair on the house, sometimes cleaning out the grain silos in preparation for storing the current year's wheat which was his main crop. And there was always rye to pull out of the wheat fields.

On top of the grain silo




Doyle, Grandpa Doyle, and David


watching Grandpa work





David shot a rabbit


David sure loved dogs






Grandpa Doyle and David
new haircut

What's in the tub?







Goofing around in the old outhouse
Three generations of Russell men, August 1980
dressing chickens, August 1982

a yucky job for a city kid, or any kid






outhouse at the McConnell place






riding on the grain drill just like his Uncle Bob did for many years, same grain drill

August 1982 

Driving tractors





We knew David as a talkative, animated boy who loved his grandparents and their lifestyle, and cared deeply for little animals. He had a Boston accent and talked very fast so listening to him as he sat in their kitchen and told stories about his life back in Massachusetts was highly entertaining. He was irreverent, funny, opinionated, profane and gentle. His Uncle Bob and I are thankful we knew David and shared some happy times together. Goodbye, David. My memories of you are all good and the last time we texted in August of 2020 you still had your sense of humor and talked of maybe moving out to Colorado. We all long to return to a place and time when we were happy.

David died Monday July 26, 2021 in Massachusetts and will be buried next to his wife Teresa.