James Kester died Friday, Aug. 16, 2013, at his home in Crawford. He was 66.
A celebration of life was held Aug. 24 at the Gunnison River Pleasure Park.
James Kester was born Jan. 20, 1947, in Como, Texas. He was adopted by the Kester family and spent his childhood in Greenfield, Tenn.
On July 6, 1969, he married Ellen "Diane" Kester in Lakewood.
He served with the U.S. Army and was stationed in Vietnam, where he was wounded three times. He received three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star. Unfortunately, he lost his leg during his service. After his recovery he learned how to ski and later taught other disabled veterans his skills. He was the first amputee to ski deep powder, the first amputee to ski with a prosthesis, and the first amputee to compete in the giant slalom against non-disabled racers. He enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren.
Mr. Kester was a member of the Church of Christ in Greenfield, Tenn., where his father was the minister. He became a Buddhist in 1980. He was also a member of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War Colorado Chapter from 1969-1980.
He is survived by his wife, Diane Kester of Hotchkiss; one son, Christos "Chris" Kester of Crawford; one daughter, Shaunna Kester of Hotchkiss; one brother, Mac Kester of Tennessee; one sister, Susan Kester of Tennessee; four grandchildren, Kitiara, Alexandra, Ian and Kayden; and three great-grandchildren, Artaio, Killian and Christopher.
He was preceded in death by his brother, Ronnie; and his adopted father, Rev. Kester.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warriors Fund, or giveforward.com/fixliz'sheart or Liz Patkie Fund, c/o Paonia State Bank.
Taylor Funeral Service and Crematory is handling the arrangements.
View the Internet obituary and sign the online guest registry at taylorfuneralservice.com.blog comments powered by Disqus