|Birth: ||Apr. 18, 1930|
|Death: ||Jan. 22, 1997|
Hood family to be crowned Ranch Family of Year
Taking home this year's prize as Ranch Family of the Year is the Hood family.
The award, which is being presented during the Western Days festival Saturday evening, is co-sponsored by the Custer County Historical and Genealogical Society and Chamber of Commerce.
The Hoods will be honored during an awards ceremony Sept. 2, beginning around 5 P.M., on the main stage under the big tent on the west end of Main Street.
Past recipients of the prestigious award have been Hap and Donna Coleman, Don and Linda Camper, Harvey and Jean Rusk, Len and Wilma Kattnig, Jack and Ruby Geroux, John and June Coleman, Robert and Arlene DeGree, and Jerome and Carolyn DeGree.
Some 50 years ago, Leona and Merwyn Hood purchased a ranch on Colony Lane in the south end of the Valley.
The ranch is located not far from the site of the Wet Mountain Valley's original German colony.
Leona (Eikelman) Hood is the daughter of Oscar and Alma (Voss) Eikelman and the grand daughter of Amelia (Knuth) Eikelman, the first child born in the Valley's German colony.
Raised in the southern part of the Valley, Leona attended the Canda and Adobe schools. She and her family moved to town when Leona was in the seventh grade.
Merwyn worked on a neighboring ranch. The couple married at Hope Lutheran Church on May 27, 1950. Soon after, the newlyweds moved to the Pueblo area.
Eighteen months later, they returned to the Valley to raise cattle, hay, fruits and vegetables.
The couple raised two sons and two daughters. They have seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
Although Merwyn passed away in January 1997, Leona still resides in the family home.
Oldest son Keith manages the cattle and hay operation while Leona continues to harvest a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Leona Laura Eikelman Hood (1930 - 2011)*
Hope Lutheran Cemetery
Created by: Betty L. Schmidt
Record added: Jul 12, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 73230854