Warren Arthur Bostrom was born March 24, 1921, and died December 8, 2012. He grew up 7 miles north and east of Kiowa, Colorado on a farm that his grandfather, Lars, homesteaded. This was a Scandinavian community. Warren was the only child of Louis and Esther (Lindblom) Bostrom. In a monthly feature of The Prairie Times called “Only Yesterday”, Warren published articles over the last 20 years recounting stories of growing up on this 640-acre wheat and cattle ranch.
All twelve years of his pre-college education were in Kiowa. He was a student leader and captain of his high school basketball team. He pitched for his fast pitch high school softball team for two years. He was awarded “Leading Boy” of the senior class and graduated as salutatorian. During his senior year, he also drove the school bus for $15 a month.
After high school, Warren attended Colorado State (Teacher’s) College for two years and then returned home to teach in a one-room schoolhouse called Lost School. He taught eight students in six grades. When WWII broke out, he joined the Navy and served as a lieutenant operating the radar board of the El Dorado – sometimes called the Admiral’s go-cart. At Iwo Jima, he saw the Marines raise the flag on Mt. Suribachi. Joe Rosenthal – the photographer who took the famous picture – was on board his ship.
Through the provisions of the GI Bill, Warren returned from the war to complete his education. While working on his Masters in School Administration in Greeley, he met Ruby Luco, a schoolteacher from Texas. They met July 17, were engaged August 4 and married September 13, 1947, in Leroy, Texas. In 2012, Warren and Ruby celebrated their 65th anniversary.
After stints in education administration and teaching at Stratton and Holyoke, Warren became Superintendent of Schools in Elbert, CO. He served in that position for three years and then moved to Colorado Springs. He taught at South Junior for 14 years. He served as the District 11 Social Studies Chairman. He was also the President of the District 11 Bowling League which had about 200 members. He was elected as the Regional Chairman for the Colorado Education Association and was eventually elected to the CEA Board. Before he retired, he sold tax-sheltered annuities to teachers and administrators across the state of Colorado.
Warren did “see the world” of the South Pacific during WW II. He also traveled to England, Sweden, Kenya and Canada. He was an avid walker – many years reaching his goal of 1M steps (@ 7 miles/day). He was an avid reader – reading most of the biographies at the Air Force Academy library – and reading the Bible at least once a year.
Warren was raised in the Kiowa Presbyterian Church. As a college student he placed his faith in Jesus Christ. Warren looked forward to heaven because of Jesus’ love for him – a love that took Jesus to the cross. Warren served as a local leader of and speaker for the Gideon’s International. He attended Grace Presbyterian Church for over 50 years and served many years as an elder.
He is the father of four children – Judy (Mrs. Sam Palpant, Spokane, WA), Steve (Via, Helena, MT), Sandi (Mrs. Paul Moede, Colorado Springs), and Gary (Sara, Colorado Springs). His children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and their spouses currently number 54. He was particularly grateful for their positive impact, and, especially in his last days, never tired of telling them he loved them.
A memorial service will be held at Grace Presbyterian Church, 2511 N. Logan Ave., 11:00 a.m. on December 14.