Denise Merrion passed away December 14, 2019 at her home in Littleton. Her husband Don Merrion was by her side as he’s always been during their 39-year journey through life together. Denise is survived by Don and their three children, Jacob, Jeff and Christa Merrion. Denise loved Don and her children with all her heart and her eyes lit up whenever she saw them. She is also survived by her beloved house cat, Wolfie.
Denise leaves behind her mother Mary Lois Boschen, sister Diane Underwood, brothers-in-law Brian Underwood and Matt Merrion, sisters-in law Sandy Van Houten and Jennifer Gillespie, nephews Reed Underwood, Joey Merrion, Nick Gillespie, Mike Van Houten and Chris Van Houten, niece Karli Gillespie, special friends Lacy Franks and Hannah Peiffer and numerous cousins. Her father Phil Boschen, sister Laurie Boschen, mother-in-law Patricia Hartmeier and father-in law Donald Merrion, Sr. predeceased her.
Denise was born in Pueblo on October 20, 1951 to Phil and Mary Lois. Her parents described her as a precocious and bright child. She was the oldest of three daughters and took that position seriously, guiding her little sisters with a firm but loving hand.
In high school Denise played the flute in the Pueblo Centennial High School concert band and was a member of the marching band. During summers she participated in Pueblo’s Pride City Marching Band, which competed throughout the state. She was passionate about books and reading and always shared her books with others as long as they promised not to break the binding.
Denise’s interest in animals led her to earn a bachelor’s degree in zoology from Colorado State University. After graduation she worked for an environmental consulting firm in Fort Collins. If she wasn’t testing samples in the lab she was out in the field dusting prairie dogs for bubonic plague fleas or in a mountain stream in knee-high waders collecting fish with a net.
She met the love of her life, Don, in Fort Collins. They were married May 24, 1980. They moved to Littleton where they raised their family. Denise was very involved with her children. She attended their religious, school and sports events, helped them with their homework and was a Cub Scout den mother. The Merrion family took many trips together and enjoyed spending time with their extended family.
Denise’s life took a turn when she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 27 years ago. She faced many challenges but her resiliency and determination were inspirational to all who knew her. Despite the difficulties that MS brought into their lives, Denise and Don never lost their wonderful sense of humor nor their love for each other.
Memorial service for Denise will be 11 a.m. on January 10, 2020 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 6853 South Prince Street in Littleton. A Rosary Service will be 7 p.m. on January 9, 2020 at Drinkwine Mortuary, 999 West Littleton Boulevard in Littleton.
Memorial contributions in Denise’s name may be made to National Multiple Sclerosis Society (nationalmssociety.org)
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