Harriet Burgess of Estes Park died at her home Easter morning, April 8, 2012. She was 86 years old. Harriet Rose Bittner was born October 14, 1925 in Sedalia, MO to parents Reverend Silas and Ida (Schleier) Bittner. Harriet grew up in Kansas City, MO where she graduated from Central High School. After the family moved to Rosemont, PA in 1942, she went on to receive her bachelor’s degree in Language and Psychology from Park College in Parkville, MO. She was the Administrative Executive at Devereaux School in Philadelphia, PA. Harriet first came to Estes Park in 1932 with her family on vacations and she then became a permanent resident in 1957.
On September 11, 1950, she married Bill Burgess at the Presbyterian Community Church of the Rockies in downtown Estes Park, which is now the site of The Old Church Shops. For 20 years, Harriet was the bookkeeper at the family-owned Old Plantation Restaurant in Estes Park where she had met Bill in 1949. She was a member of the Community Church, the Estes Park Planning Commission, Library Board, Human Resource Development Center, Eastern Star, United Way, PEO Chapter AV, Quota Club, 50-year member of Woman’s Club, Presbyterian Women, Merry Marthas, League of Women’s Voters and Old Timers Breakfast Group.
In 1965, Harriet was named Girl of The Year by Eta Omega Sorority and in 1986 named Woman of the Year by the Estes Park Business & Professional Women. She was the volunteer coordinator at MacGregor Ranch for over 20 years, for which she received a Governor’s Honorary Award and she was also the recipient of the Estes Park Volunteer of the Year Award in 2008. Harriet recently finished writing the last chapter of a book on the 100 Year History of the Estes Park Woman’s Club, which will be published this fall.
Harriet is survived by her son William E. Burgess, III and his wife Renee of Durango, CO, daughters Deborah Richardson of Estes Park and Dr. Virginia Burgess of Bloomfield, NM, four grandchildren, William E. Burgess IV (Jordan) of Bayfield, Co, Sarah Hanna (Shane) of Grand Junction, CO, Brandon Richardson (Samantha) of Las Vegas, NV, and Katelyn Burgess of Boulder, CO and six great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Bill, and sister Ruth Shaw Louth.
A memorial service will celebrate Harriet’s life at Presbyterian Community Church of the Rockies on Saturday, April 14, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to MacGregor Ranch, PEO Chapter AV Scholarship Fund, Woman’s Club, and Community Church of the Rockies in care of Allnutt Funeral Service 1302 Graves Avenue Estes Park, CO 80517. See www.allnutt.com to send a message to Harriet’s family.