Barry Lawson

Barry Lawson

Donald Barry Lawson


    Barry Lawson, 58, of Drake, Colorado passed away December 25, 2010 at his home in the Big Thompson Canyon, after a battle with cancer.

    Barry was born November 29, 1952, in Olive Hill, Kentucky. His parents were Donald L. and Eva (Oakley) Lawson.

    He spent his childhood in the tri-state area of Kentucky, Indiana, and southern Ohio, graduating from Glen Este High School in Clermont County, Ohio, in 1971.

    Barry spent most of his working life in the service of children and teens. He volunteered at programs for disabled children and teens during his teen and early adult years. When he moved to Denver, Colorado, in 1974, he began volunteering at a coffee house program run by Comitis Crisis Center, a program for teens and young adults in crisis. He continued his work at the Center until 1987, eventually becoming the assistant director.

    He married Kay Schaffer in 1979. They relocated to Estes Park with their son Denali in 1987.

    Barry worked in the hospitality industry and sales until 1996. He accepted a position with Youth Empire in Loveland that year, and then later became the first director of the Estes Valley Youth Center, a position he continued until shortly before his death in 2010. During his time at the Youth Center, he established the Estes Valley Skate Park, and also directed the youth sports program.

    He collaborated with the Parents and Community for Kids board, the Partners Youth Mentoring program, the Park R3 schools, the Community Services Coalition, the Restorative Justice program, Victims Advocates, Eagle Rock School, the Boy and Girl Scouts, Circle of Friends Montessori School, PFLAG, Loneman School, United Way of the Estes Valley, and various civic organizations and church youth groups.

    He is survived by his father Donald, his wife Kay, son Denali, and daughter Kakina (Kiwi); brothers Philip (Vanessa), Douglas (Debbie), and Kevin, and sister Beverly Turner (Gary), seven nieces and nephews, as well as numerous extended family members and close friends.

    A memorial service was held Saturday, February 12, at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Estes Park.

    On July 2, a remembrance will be held at the family homecoming in Carter.

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