Priscilla J. Loonsten
Priscilla J. Loonsten of Estes Park, CO passed on at her home July 19, 2010. She was 81 years old. Priscilla Jean Conn was born August 7, 1928 in Logansport, IN. Her parents were Edgar & Mary Margaret (Wickersham) Conn. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Purdue University. She also held a degree in Biology from Christian College in Columbia, MO.
Professionally, Priscilla was a Mental Health Professional in Logansport and Indianapolis, IN. The programs she developed for mental health treatment and suicide watch and prevention, were adopted without change by the State of Indiana, and later by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare.
Priscilla was an avid mountaineer long before she retired to Estes Park. She and her late husband, Frits Loonsten, who preceded her in death in 1988, climbed and hiked in the Swiss Alps and Scottish Highlands for over 10 consecutive summers. Some years after Frits’ passing, Priscilla, at the age of 63, made a solo climb of the Swiss Matterhorn in his memory. Prior to retiring with Richard to Estes Park in 1996, Priscilla assumed the Presidency and management of the prodigious Landscape Architectural firm of Frits Loonsten, Inc. During those many years she maintained the firm’s internationally acclaimed standards, and was well known for her horticultural proclivity. She loved animals, especially her dogs. She was an acclaimed member of the Association of Mental Health Professionals Societies and a past member of the Rotary Club of Indianapolis. After moving to Estes Park, Priscilla served a term as Treasurer and later as Board Member at Large on the Little Valley Home Owners Association, and until her death continued to enthusiastically support the work of the Association and the Road Board. Priscilla was an avid traveler. After moving to Estes Park she and Richard traveled by car well over 100,000 miles in addition to circling the United States more than two times by rail, via Amtrak. As recently as May of this year she, with the companionship of Susan Signs of Estes Park, returned to Switzerland for one last reflection on her beloved Matterhorn Mountain and the Swiss Alps.
Priscilla is survived by her life partner of over 20 years, Richard Junghans of Estes Park; a daughter Darcie Rockenbaugh of Crawfordsville, IN, a son Devin Hile of Mooresville, IN; 2 stepdaughters Nancy Smith of Tampa, FL and Susan Reese of Indianapolis, IN; 3 stepsons Steven Junghans of Loveland, CO, Brian Junghans of Atlanta, GA, and Dr. Richard P. Junghans, Jr. of Boston, MA, and 2 foster sons, Bill Hall of Pahrump, NV, and Dario Savala of Cozumel, MX, as well as a brother James Conn of Corrington, TN, a sister Vera Hatt of Logansport, IN, and a sister Barbara Robinson of Kissimmee, FL; 3 grandchildren, 5 step-grandchildren, and 3 step-great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, one sister Dorothy, and one brother Richard, and husband Frits Loonsten.
A gathering in Estes Park to celebrate Pricilla’s life will be held at a date to be announced later.
Memorial contributions may be made to Best Friends Animal Society, Kanab, UT, or to a Memorial of your choice in care of Allnutt Funeral Service 1302 Graves Ave. Estes Park, CO 80517. See www.allnutt.com to send a message to Priscilla’s family.