Betty Jean Koppes, 83, of Greeley, formerly of Delta, passed away on Sept. 28, 2015, in Greeley.
Betty Jean Radcliff was born in Oklahoma City, Okla., to Margaret (Brown) and Clarence C. Radcliff, Sr. on Jan. 10, 1932, the second of nine children. She went to school in Oklahoma City until she was 15 when the family moved to a ranch near Genoa, Colo. She finished high school in a class of eight in Genoa in 1950. She married Virgil Koppes in 1950 in Hugo, Colo. Together they had six children. They were later divorced in 1977.
Betty worked as a homemaker and ran the family farm and helped her father with his ranch until her father sold the ranch and everyone related to him moved to Delta in 1959. In Delta, she joined the community and attended every event her children participated in and at the same time, she ran a small truck garden where her children learned many valuable lessons. Many of her children's cousins and friends found their way to the family home where she made them feel like part of the family. Like many others in Delta, in addition to her full-time job as a homemaker, she worked at the canning factory during season, then at the Skyland packing plant and the Last Chance bar. When the opportunity arose to go back to school, she moved to Greeley in 1988. She graduated from Aims Community College as a certified drug and alcohol counselor. Betty then worked at the Greeley Housing Authority for several years before she retired from paid employment. Betty always volunteered and served her community as a party official in the Democratic Party before she switched to the Republican Party. She was an election judge from the time of LBJ to George W. Bush. She trained all her children and grandchildren as to how the political system worked. Betty also volunteered as a 4-H leader for over 15 years after having been a 10-year member herself. She ran the biggest fundraiser for the Delta County clubs that served over 1,500 people at a one-day dinner for many years. Betty also took under her wing a number of young people who happened to show up at her house or in her view. She was awarded the Volunteer of the Year by the City of Delta for her work with youth. After moving to Greeley, Betty also volunteered for RSVP and United Way. She clipped coupons, embroidered baby gear for the new Weld County babies, and just about anything she was asked right up until the time of her death. Betty loved volunteering and for 15 years worked with the Greeley Stampede with the group that provided security for the shows and rodeos where she worked tirelessly.
Betty is survived by all her children, Rebecca Koppes Conway (Sean Conway), John Koppes (Bobbi), Joseph Koppes (Connie), Diann Suttle (Ken), Don Koppes, Jerry Koppes (Jan); and grandchildren, Kelley Gutierrez Crochet (Chad), Kathrine Gutierrez Hinds, Sara Mendenhall (Cim), Bryan Koppes (Jennifer), Amy Lawson (Adrian), Carly Koppes, Ben Koppes, Hayley Koppes, Tressa Nichols-Smalley (Matt), Evan Koppes and Drew Koppes; as well as 11 great-grandchildren and 24 nieces and nephews. Betty is survived by her sisters, Jody, Barbara and Roberta; and her brother, Clarence, Jr.
Betty is preceded in death by her mother and father; and her sisters, Cleta, Patricia and Arlene; and her brother, Earl.
Viewing was held Monday, Oct. 5, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Adamson Funeral Home, Greeley. Funeral services were held on Tuesday, Oct. 6, at 2 p.m. at the Adamson Chapel, Greeley with Pastor Gary Meade, Bonell Chaplain officiating. Burial followed at Sunset Memorial Gardens, Greeley.
Memorial gifts may be given to United Way of Weld County, Bright Beginnings in care of Adamson Funeral Home, 2000 47th Ave., Greeley, CO 80634. Friends may send condolences at www.adamsonchapels.com.
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