Cover photo for Janet Howard Bauer's Obituary
Janet Howard Bauer Profile Photo
1949 Janet 2020

Janet Howard Bauer

January 24, 1949 — November 28, 2020

Private services for Janet (Ruth) Howard Bauer will be held at Cedar Grove Cemetery in Mancos, CO. Janet passed away on Saturday November 28, 2020. She was born in Worcester Massachusetts on January 24, 1949, the first daughter of John & Thelma Howard.
They lived in nearby Millbury on South Main Street in the house her parents built on a one-acre lot when she was young. As a child she really enjoyed spending the days playing in the woods of central Massachusetts. She had friends and classmates in a stable community, attending the Millbury Federated Church and the schools that her father attended before. Her mother, an ”old Yankee” from northern Vermont, had ancestry tracing back to Plymouth in colonial America. Her father’s parents immigrated to Millbury from Ireland at the turn of the century.
Janet graduated from Millbury High School in 1967, chose to venture west to Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Although she was not a member of the LDS church, she fit in well with the values and standards that were held by the institution. She recalled the day she got on a plane in Boston and flew alone to Utah, encountering other BYU students at the airport and riding with them from Salt Lake City to Provo. Janet reflected on how fascinated she was looking out the window at the size of the mountains and the “Y” on the mountain above Provo. Janet became lifelong friends with roommates at BYU.
While in college, she worked summers making hand tools at Buck Brothers in Millbury and later as an operator at the phone company in Worcester. She graduated from BYU in the summer of 1971 with a BA degree in secondary art education. Even though she had planned to return to New England, she was offered and accepted an opportunity to teach art at the Junior High School in Cedar City, Utah. She arrived in southwestern Utah with only two suitcases and no car. She chose to live in the private student apartments located adjacent to the Junior High School and Southern Utah State College, sharing the apartment with five other young women.
She discovered the art department was in a state of disarray, with little to no supplies. She built the art department up to include a wide variety of art projects for her students such as; casting silver jewelry, sand painting, pottery, drawing, painting and much more. She really enjoyed having her students decorate the local businesses in Cedar City for holidays, especially Halloween.
After her first year of teaching, Janet spent the summer living and working on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, managing one of the Utah Park’s concession facilities. In her second year of teaching, she met her husband, Charlie. They took the opportunity to travel throughout the southwest from Cedar City. Memorable was a Labor Day trip across Nevada to Yosemite National Park and the San Francisco Bay area. They were married in her church in Millbury in June 1973, honeymooned on Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. They returned to Cedar City where they rented an apartment for a year and then a small house close to the school and college. Janet continued teaching, expanding the art department of the junior high school. She took a lot of pride in her achievements. To celebrate their first wedding anniversary, they traveled to Hawaii.
Janet liked rural country areas. She and Charlie found and purchased 6 acres of land in western Massachusetts outside the small village of Barre. Surrounded by a New England stone wall, towering oaks over the road, part pasture and part untouched forest with a small brook, it was ideal, but remote from any possible employment. The property reminded her a lot of her childhood.
Janet’s heart was in her teaching, however, she and Charlie moved to Golden, CO in 1975 when his job was transferred. They first attempted to locate in Evergreen but found most houses slightly out of their reach. Janet continued teaching activities as a substitute teacher for the Jefferson County School District but focused mainly on her home and family. They settled on their first home in the Applewood neighborhood just outside Golden and started a family (one son and one daughter).
Inspired by her Aunt Rita, Janet took on the task of refinishing Charlie’s great-Aunt Ethel’s mahogany piano. Anyone that had seen it before marveled at the restoration of the old piano. She played the piano and guitar and encouraged her children to pursue their musical interests. Janet mastered her gardening in Applewood. She also learned how to preserve the fruits and vegetables from her garden by canning. Each year it became more productive, often giving fresh tomatoes and other vegetables to neighbors and friends. They stayed in Applewood for 9 years.
In 1983, they purchased a lot in Evergreen and built their own home to raise their children, moving further away from the city. In these years, she encouraged her children to participate in soccer, swimming, horseback riding, music and ice skating. She joined the US Figure Skating Assoc, participated in club activities, writing the clubs newsletter. She would use her sewing abilities to create dresses and costumes for her daughter’s ice skating. She loved being involved with the artistic part in the costumes and music selection. One year she painted the historic bell tower of the Episcopal Church in Evergreen and used it in their annual Christmas card. She touched several people who thanked her after the holidays.
Janet and Charlie returned to Cape Cod several times, to vacation and visiting Janet’s family. Janet spent one summer with the children on the Cape, where they took swimming lessons and sailing lessons. Often trips were expanded to explore Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine and in later years as more extensive cross-country road trips to visit other states. Janet was able to visit 49 of the states, missing only Alaska. Janet was always looking for something new. “Variety is the spice of life.” She took her family on vacations to Vancouver Island, Olympic National Forest, Louisiana, Lake of the Ozarks and the Rideau Canal-Thousand Islands area of Quebec.
Genealogy research started from a religion class at BYU, led to the discovery that she was a descendent of the Mayflower. Janet submitted the documentation and became a member of the Descendants of the Mayflower Society. She attended one of the society’s Thanksgiving dinners at the Denver Country Club at which astronaut Walter Schirra gave an inspirational talk.
She made holidays especially festive. Celebrating holidays with Charlie’s parents, incorporating special plates from their past and those of her family and then exploring new traditions which will be remembered and passed down.
Her grandchildren were the highlight of her life, she enjoyed every moment she got to spend with them. They were always in her thoughts and she loved them dearly. Their joy was her joy.
She lived in her home in Evergreen for the past 36 years, and as the area was growing, she was planning a new home on family acreage in a rural setting. Janet will be missed by friends and family.

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