It is said that “HOME” is where your “HEART” is. On August 14th, Darlene Bea Walker Aaland decided the time had come to use her boarding pass and take the last journey of her life to the place she always knew was her true home. For the past several years, Darlene often talked about a conversation she had with our Dad, Curtis Aaland, shortly before he passed away. She said they agreed that when it was her time to go, Dad was to wait for her by the river and she would bring the fishing poles. Although it has been difficult for her family and friends to see her go, we find great comfort in knowing she is with her beloved Curtis, her precious great-granddaughter, Kayla, and many other dear family members and friends. We can only hope she took enough fishing poles.
Darlene lived a life filled to the brim with true joy. If you were to follow her, you would see that every step of her journey here on earth was a solid, steadfast step of love and her trail left no doubt about her unshakable faith in God. She believed in the strength of the family, believed in positive thinking, had a great sense of humor, and she loved easily and unconditionally. Many lives were touched by her example allowing them to find their own path to spirituality. Her heart was generous, often taking in relatives who needed a helping hand, including fostering a child for several years. Many of the neighborhood children thought of her as their second “Mom”. Darlene and Curtis hosted refugees from Bosnia enabling them to establish themselves in America as US Citizens.
Darlene was born on March 18, 1934, in her Grandmother’s house on the Bunde-Walker Farm near Lyons, South Dakota. Her parents, Bennie and Dollie (Burgett) Walker, moved to Sioux Falls for most of Darlene’s childhood years. In 1952, Darlene graduated from Augustana Academy, Canton, SD, and took her first job out of high school as an aide at the Bethphage Mission, a charitable facility in Axtell, NE, caring for developmentally disabled people of all ages. After the new year of 1953, Darlene joined her parents in Colorado Springs and attended Practical Nursing School at the Glockner-Penrose Hospital. On October 25, 1953, she married Curtis; the love of her life, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and worked as a Practical Nurse in the Newborn Ward of Penrose Hospital until the birth of their son in August of 1954. Darlene was a loving stay-at-home mother to their four children until 1972 when she was hired on as a seasonal worker for LooArt Press/Current Inc. and was quickly offered a full-time position. She decided to accept the position for one year; she retired from Current almost 25 years later!
With retirement, Darlene was a very active member of Grace Lutheran Church as well as the Sons of Norway, Fjellheim Lodge. She recently joined Bethel Lutheran Church.
Darlene was predeceased by her loving husband of 57 years, Curtis Aaland, her brother, Dwane Walker and her great-granddaughter, Kayla Dobson. She is survived by four children, John Aaland (wife Sharon), Joan Dacus (husband Byron), Rae Aaland (husband Les Roth), and Robin Brown (husband Mike), as well as foster son, Karl Townsend. Darlene is also survived by six grandchildren, Kevin Aaland (Marilyn), Kirsten Aaland, Angela Calloura (Tony), Morningstar Coyhis (Shaun), Kateri Coyhis (Russell) and Landon Brown as well as 5 great- grandchildren, Alora Aaland, Danny Calloura, Anthony Calloura, Lylah Mead and Isaiah Mead. Darlene is also survived by great-great grandchild, Mila Dobson. Should friends desire, memorial contributions may be sent to Sons of Norway, Fjellheim Lodge, 1045 Ford Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80915.
Visitation and Service Information
Location: Shrine of Remembrance, 1730 E. Fountain Blvd., Colorado Springs, CO 80918
Viewing: August 22, 2019 Time: 5pm – 7pm
Memorial Service: August 23, 2019 Time:10:00am
Reception to follow at the Sons of Norway, Fjellheim Lodge, 1045 Ford Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80915