Jean Lee Vader, 88, peacefully passed away on Jan. 31, 2021 at Valley Manor Nursing Home in Montrose, Colo. She was born on Feb. 24, 1932 to John Albert McGregor and La Veta Foreman McGregor. She grew up on the McGregor family ranch in Powderhorn, attended high school in Gunnison, and married Richard Mark Vader on June 1, 1950.
They bought a ranch on the Cochetopa Creek in Gunnison County where they spent 22 years raising their five children and cattle ranching, (Herefords). In 1981, Jean and Mark sold the ranch and took over managing the Gunnison Cemetery together for 16 years. Then in 1999 they moved to Montrose, Colo.
Jean enjoyed spending time with her family, going 4-wheeling in the mountains (except on the tippy and steep roads), as well as rock and arrowhead hunting. She was a ham radio operator and became a pilot to fly the small Cessna family ranch plane. She spent many hours helping her children with their many 4-H activities.
After moving to Montrose, Jean joined Montrose Christian Church, participating in the ladies Bible study and the Sunday school class. She especially enjoyed going out to lunch with her friends. Jean was always available when her friends and neighbors needed help or a ride. After her husband Mark passed away, Jean was an active volunteer for HopeWest for over 10 years.
Jean is survived by her sister Kathleen May McGregor, of Gunnison, Colo., daughters Karen (Dave) Israel of Hale, Mo., Cindy (Rich) Bray of Montrose, Colo., Diane Johnston of Jackson, Miss., and Tami Blair of Las Vegas, Nev. She also has many grandchildren, great-grandchildren and even some great-greatgrandchildren. Jean was preceded in death by her husband, Richard Mark Vader and their son, Richard John Vader, her parents, John Albert and La Veta Ruth McGregor, her sister Luena Ruth Cadwell, and her brothers John Calvin McGregor and Charles Norman McGregor.
A memorial service will be held in June in Montrose, and a graveside service will be held in Gunnison. An announcement will be posted in the Montrose and Gunnison newspapers as soon as a date is arranged. Crippin Funeral Home is assisting Jean’s family.
Donations in honor of Jean Vader can be made to HopeWest at 725 S. 4th St., Montrose, CO 81401, or Senior Community Care PACE at 2377 Robins Way, Montrose, CO 81401.