Former Salida resident Jeanne Adele Schoech, 76, died April 20, 2021, in Clifton.
She was born Oct. 18, 1944, to Maxine Bradbury and Gene Stanwood.
She grew up in Ellis, Kansas. Her fondest memories of her childhood included a love of dance, travels with her Grandpa Max and the joys of growing up in a small town.
She attended Fort Hays State University, where she furthered her love of the arts.
In 1966, she married David Schoech. During the first years of their marriage, the couple lived in California while Mr. Schoech served in the U.S. Navy.
A desire to be close to family brought the young couple back to Kansas in 1970.
Mrs. Schoech enjoyed being close to family but also found joy fostering her own personal love of dance.
She opened her own dance studio in the basement of the family home, and it wasn’t long before the studio expanded and she was offering classes and coordinating recitals.
Her love of dance was shared with all of her children, as each of her four children took classes, performed in recitals and continued through the generations.
In 1986, the Schoechs followed their dream of moving to Colorado, where she continued to teach dance and began teaching in schools.
She spent many years working as a paraprofessional supporting students receiving special education services related to an emotional or behavioral disability.
Friends and family said she had an amazing way of blending all the things she loved in life, and her professional work was no different.
During that time, she brought dance, dogs and her love of reading to students.
Mrs. Schoech developed Paws for Reading, an after-school reading program, where students had an opportunity to read aloud to a dog.
She created Kids in Action, which provided creative dance lessons to elementary students and provided the students she supported access to unlimited love, devotion, trust and learning.
Dog Days was a therapy and dog training program used in the special education classroom where Mrs. Schoech taught.
She published a book about her adventures with dogs, “Hank and Company: Paws for Therapy.”
After she finished raising her children, she went back to college, leaving Salida and moving to Aurora to complete her associate of arts degree.
She went on to work as an educator in preschools.
Mrs. Schoech continued to advocate for students and dogs by developing a therapy dog organization at a local residential treatment center.
Friends and family said she believed in the healing bond between a dog and a human and modeled this belief all her life.
She spent the last years of her life in Clifton close to her daughter Jana and grandchildren Josh and Morgan.
She became a board member of the Grand Valley Kennel Club, supported the annual dog show, volunteered with students to provide a foundation of dog knowledge and contributed to the animal care fair.
Family and friends said they are reminded of these words when remembering her: “You have done all this without a word, a touch or a deed. You have done this by being yourself.”
Mrs. Schoech was preceded in death by her husband; grandparents Della and Max Underhill; and her parents.
Survivors include her sons, Michael (Mary) Schoech of Russell, Kansas, and Todd (Kris) Schoech of Salida; daughters, Jana Schoech of Grand Junction and Laura (Jim) Trapp of Loveland; grandchildren, Justin Schoech, Matt Schoech, granddaughter Jessica Schoech, Josh Reynolds, Morgan Reynolds, Easton Trapp and Presley Trapp; great-grandchildren, Analeigha and David Schoech; and brother, Donald Bradbury.
Her service and burial will be at 10 a.m. July 24, 2021, at Mount Hope Cemetery in Ellis, Kansas.
Arrangements were with Martin Mortuary of Grand Junction.
Condolences and memories may be shared at https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/grand-junction-co/jeanne-schoech-10162165.