Barbara Mae Rozycki passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends on August 28, 2021 in Centennial, Colorado. Barbara was born on July 10, 1936 in Mora, Minnesota to Emil and Hulda (Lakeberg) Peterson, the youngest of seven children. Barbara was raised on a farm and she always had fond memories of this time. She would often share amusing stories of her farm life adventures involving her siblings and the animals they cared for. She was a 1954 graduate of Mora High School and shortly thereafter joined her sisters, Ruth and Emily, in California where she enrolled in the L.A. County General Hospital’s Nursing Program.
It was in Los Angeles that Barbara met the man who would become her husband of 62 years, Richard Charles (Dick) Rozycki, a fellow Minnesotan who had moved west to join the engineering staff at Lockheed. Barb and Dick's courtship involved enjoying the cultural events of Los Angeles and surrounding areas where Dick would often fly them in a Piper Cub airplane. They were married in Glendale, California on August 31, 1957. In 1960, a new job took the family, which now included two young sons, to Littleton, Colorado. The family remained in the Littleton area for the rest of their lives, except for a two year stint in New Orleans in the late 1970s. Dick predeceased Barbara in April, 2020.
Barbara and Dick added three daughters to their brood for a total of five children, all of whom survive her: Richard Rozycki of Scottsdale, AZ; James Rozycki (Leslie) of Mandeville, LA; Michele Rozycki of Denver; Celeste Sumner (Matt) of Centennial; and Renee Rozycki (H. Vause) of Denver. In addition, Barbara is survived by six grandchildren: Krista Delbuno (Justin); Bryan Rozycki; Isabella Sumner; Evelyn Sumner; Chloe Rozycki Vause and Sophie Rozycki Vause, and one great grandchild, Grayson Delbuno. Barbara is also survived by her sister, Emily Sharp of Dallas, OR and by numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her brother, James Peterson, and by her sisters, Peggy Mannie, Norma Starner, Ruth McElroy and Patricia Tiahrt.
Barbara was, first and foremost, a proud, loving and supportive mother to her children. She never missed a sporting event, cub scout/girl scout activity, performance or awards banquet, and was always the loudest cheerleader in the crowd. She logged many station wagon miles over the decades hauling her kids around to various events and activities. Education and academic excellence were Peterson family values and Barbara passed that expectation along to her own children, both through example and encouragement.
In addition to full time parenting, Barbara was an active volunteer and member of numerous civic groups including hospital auxiliaries, garden clubs, and local charity programs. As her children grew older, Barbara also took on a number of part time jobs including working as a seamstress, bank teller, Avon representative (who always bought more than she sold), and as a medical office manager for several physicians, a role she continued until her retirement. Barbara’s hobbies included rose gardening (Tropicana and Queen Elizabeth were her favorite varieties), and she planted a rose garden at each home the family lived in. She also loved sharing her Swedish heritage with the family, and continued to teach herself the language until recently. Barbara and Dick always enjoyed having pets and their menagerie included many cats and dogs (especially toy poodles) over the years.
The Rozycki family loved to travel, which often included road trips to visit family and friends across the nation, or spending time in the Rockies, including at the family properties near Black Hawk and South Park, Colorado. Barb, Dick and their children's families continued to travel together over the years, including a memorable trip to Sweden to explore Barbara’s ancestry, and frequent visits to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, which remains a family favorite. Barbara’s extended family has continued to gather in Colorado for holidays and family events, none of which will be the same without her.
Barbara and Dick were members of St Mary Parish in Littleton for 34 years. A joint funeral mass will be held there followed by interment of their ashes at Littleton Cemetery.
Barbara’s family expresses their sincere gratitude to her relatives, friends, caregivers and others who have supported her in recent years.
In lieu of flowers, kindly consider planting a rose bush in Barbara’s memory or making a donation to your local pet rescue in her honor.
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