Colleen Rae Conlee, 62, of John Day passed away Sunday, Mar. 24, 2019 at her home following a battle with cancer. She was laid to rest on Sunday, Mar. 30th, 2019 at St. Andrew’s Catholic Cemetery with Father Christie Tissera as the officiant.
Colleen was born Sept. 2nd, 1956 in John Day, Oregon. She graduated from Grant Union High School in 1974 and attended Eastern Oregon University. Colleen fell in love and married W. Kim Conlee on July 10th, 1976.
She worked briefly at Western States Equipment and Gardner Enterprises followed by a thirty-year career as an office coordinator with the Oregon Department of Forestry. When she semi-retired, she continued working for them as the Emergency Fire Committee finance coordinator.
Although Colleen had no children of her own, she loved to dote on all her nieces and nephews, Travis, Ian, Riley, Megan, Sylvia, John, Rachel, Cody, Leslie, Amanda, and Sydni. The tradition continued with her 16 great nieces and nephews. She was especially close to her sister’s sons Travis, Ian, and Riley, and was often referred to as their “other Mother.” She delighted in spending time with them and spoiling them. As their family grew, she warmly welcomed Lacey and Jess into the family and became a grandmother to the boys’ children.
Colleen enjoyed camping at Big Creek with her husband Kim, celebrating birthdays and holidays and making lasting memories with family and friends. She was a talented crafter and interior decorator creating a warm and inviting magazine worthy home that she openly welcomed everyone into.
She is survived by her husband of forty-three years, Kim Conlee of John Day; mother, Joyce of Canyon City, Oregon; brother, Mike (Lisa) Hendricks of Coos Bay, Oregon; sister, Karla (Dan) Averett of Canyon City; father-in-law, Alva (Marge) Conlee of John Day; brother-in-law, Dale (Nancy) Conlee of Prineville, Oregon; sister-in-law, Laura (Jerry) Gill of Mt. Vernon, Oregon. She was preceded in death by her father, Herman, and mother-in-law Helen.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Elks Eye Clinic or Blue Mt. Hospice through Driskill Memorial Chapel 241 S. Canyon Blvd. John Day, OR 97845.