Theodore Ray Powell passed away peacefully on April 19th, 2023. Ted was born July 27th, 1940, in Ovid, Colorado, the youngest of seven children to Ray and Edna Powell (Harris).
Although school work often took a backseat to farm work, he graduated from high school in 1958 and enlisted in the US Air Force, spending the next seven years stationed at various bases around the states and abroad. He told the story of a time early on when, after a lengthy stretch between calls home, his mother placed a call to his staff sergeant. Needless to say, he did not miss any calls after that. Ted returned home after his honorable discharge and continued with his farming career.
One night, at the pool hall with his good friend, Gene Krumm, he spotted a girl across the room and said to his buddy, "Who's that broad?" Gene's quick reply was," That's my sister, you son of a ...." Well, Ted ended up marrying that girl, Judy Krumm, on September 26th, 1965, and spent the next 57 years by her side.
Ted had a delayed start to what would become a 47-year career with IBM. The story goes he interviewed for and was offered a job with the plant in Boulder, which he turned down. He told the hiring manager that he couldn't leave the farm before harvest; it just wasn't right. Well, that guy saw the kind of man Ted was and waited until the following February when he called and again offered him the job. Ted took the job and settled in Longmont, CO, with Judy, where their two children were born, Gregory Ray, in 1967 and Colleen Marie, in 1969.
The family made several moves over the years. People would ask, oh, are you military? "No, IBM." For Ted, IBM stood for I'll Be Movin'. After seven years in Longmont, CO, the family headed to Milwaukee, WI, for five years, Omaha, NE, for four years, and Baltimore, MD, for a lengthy stretch. During those years, Ted held several different management positions, as well as a stretch doing road shows producing training material. Late in his career, he became a corporate auditor and investigator, which led to the discovery of his very particular set of skills, finding, then fixing. IBM took the Ted Powell show south, moving him and Judy to Texas, where he worked for a short span and then spent the next six years auditing processes and contracts through Mexico and every country in South America. Somewhere along the way, Ted retired. It's said that he was the Brett Favre of IBM, as his retirements never lasted too long. He came back to work on a project in India which turned into an 18-month stay followed by a stretch in Ukraine. After that retirement was finished, he was asked to go fix three countries in Africa: Uganda, Madagascar, and Sierra Leon. Ted finally retired for the last time in 2012 at 72 years old to be with his Judy.
Ted and Judy were fortunate enough to be able to spend the next nine years traveling the world together. They often took trips with a group of friends or with the Whites Chapel Methodist Church, where they were faithful members. Ted didn't just see the world; he experienced it. He climbed the mountains of Machu Picchu, went on an African safari in Zimbabwe and Zambia, rode donkeys down the cliffs of Santorini, Greece, and climbed onto a camel in Egypt. They took the family on a trip through Denmark, Scotland, and Ireland. Ted even embarked on a private tour of Pripyat and Chornobyl. If the question was "Do you want to go...", the answer was always yes! In their spare time, they bought a new home in Trophy Club, TX, where they stayed for six years before finally making the move north to Cranberry, PA, to be close to their children.
Ted made many friends along his journey. He had work friends, travel friends, church friends, and neighborhood friends. He loved nothing more than making his way around a room full of people and stopping at each to see what they were up to. He had genuine elation if your news was good and heartfelt compassion when you faced a challenge. Ted had a knack for doling out advice that will ring in the ears of the lucky recipients for years to come. As a brother, he always stayed close to his siblings and never missed an opportunity to celebrate an accomplishment or share in a loss. As a father, he was an eternal light and compass, pointing the right path for his kids. He led by example, and lessons were often taught without you even knowing you were learning. When they were young, he coached Greg's little league team and cheered Colleen on at track meets. When they got older, he taught them how to drive, how to work hard, how to be a loyal friend, how to be a good person, how to be... just like him. His daughter was often by his side. Toward the end, he referred to her as the train driver, to which she would quickly add, "This train derails a lot"! Until his last day, when his kids came into the room, his eyes would light up.
Ted lost the love of his life only six months ago when Judy passed away suddenly. In addition to his beloved Judy, Ted was preceded in death by his parents, Ray and Edna Powell, brothers Gene (Jean), Bob (Betty), Bernard (Betty), Rex (Beverly), and sister Mildred (Zeke) Zimmerman.
He is survived by his children Gregory (Victoria) Powell, of Sewickley, PA, and Colleen (Bill) Kasenic of Pittsburgh, PA, along with grandson Spencer Powell Kasenic; his brother, Chuck (Joan) of Sedgwick, CO; brother-in-law Gary (Carol) Krumm of Holyoke CO, sister-in-law, Dorothy Krumm of Hastings NE along with many nieces and nephews.
A service of remembrance will be held at the Ovid Methodist Church, 203 5th Street, Ovid, CO, on Friday, May 12th, at 11:00 am. Inurnment will be at the Ovid Cemetery, with a lunch immediately following at the Ovid Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. Memorial donations will be designated to the North East Colorado Board Of Coop Educational Services, which funds the Paul Krumm Award, given annually to an outstanding student who makes a difference in the life of a child with a disability.
Prairie Hills Funeral Home of Julesburg is in charge of arrangements.