Obituary of Ann Jean Elliott
Ann Jean Elliott, age 87, passed away on Saturday, September 23, 2023. She was born in Detroit, Michigan on February 17, 1936, to Ethel and Roger Pelchat, who also had three sons; Roger Pelchat (Sharon), Dale Pelchat, and Ronald Pelchat (Rosemary). She graduated at the top of her class at the age of fifteen, from a small high school in Michigan. From a very early age she was an overachiever; intelligent, highly organized and very detailed oriented, with an innate sense of creativity and an intense drive for perfection.
She married Russell Kenneth Elliott in December of 1952 at the tender age of sixteen. Within 11 eleven years of being married she had seven children between August 1953 to May of 1964. Each pregnancy she hoped for a baby girl yet had another boy. All seven boys were named using RKE initials; Russell Kenneth, Robin Kirk, Randy Kelly, Ricky Kevin, Ronald Keith, Reagan Kerry, and Ryan Kris. Finally, in 1965 she wrote a letter to Wyoming Social Services, plainly stating she had seven boys and desperately wanted a little girl, inquiring if there were any girls up for adoption. On February 14, 1966, she brought home a 6-month-old baby girl from Denver and broke the mold by naming her Colleen Ann. She often said the day she brought home Colleen was one of the happiest days of her life and also stated frequently, “Thank God I had seven boys and one girl, instead of seven girls and one boy!”.
A Depression-Era baby, she truly embodied the traits of the Silent Generation, known for their frugality, loyalty and determination. She could stretch $20 over a month, feed a family of ten and still have a $1 left over for savings. In fact, she most likely put the $1 in savings first and figured out how to stretch the remaining $19 throughout the month. She made most things by hand, baked from scratch, cooked, cleaned and still found time to quilt and make clothes for her family. She was highly organized and the energy she put forth in providing a safe and clean home is something to be respected and praised. She was a tireless homemaker, getting up early to make breakfast and while the kids were eating, she would lay out sixteen pieces of bread in two rows. The top row peanut butter, the bottom row jelly. Lunch was always the same; PBJ, a piece of fruit and a homemade treat. There was never just one pie for the holidays; there were three to four. The biggest challenge was hiding them so the kids wouldn’t inhale prior to serving.
When she wasn’t making a meal, cleaning or baking, we would often find her working in her sewing area, working on her latest project. A passionate quilter and seamstress she sewed shirts for the boys and her husband and cute outfits for her daughter. In the late 1980’s she and Russ belonged to a square-dancing community. She actively recruited her elder sons and their wives to go dancing weekly. It's hard to say which she liked more, making and wearing the square-dancing dresses for herself and others or the dancing itself. Her attention to detail and her steadfast determination to work on her many quilts through the years showed her immense quilting talent. Having multiple quilts displayed in The Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum, she won several awards and received high accolades for her creativity and fine detail. She fastidiously worked on every quilt she ever made. Multi-talented, she also had a keen sense for numbers and finances going back to school in 1974 at Red Rocks Community College. She earned an associate degree in accounting, a two-year program, in just over a year.
She is preceded in death by her husband, Russell Kenneth Elliott Sr., her sons: Ronald Keith, Russell Kenneth Jr., and Rick Kevin, her brothers: Roger Pelchat Jr. (Sharon), Dale Pelchat and Ronald Pelchat (Rosemary), her mother Ethel Pelchat Jennings and her father Roger Pelchat Sr.
A memorial gathering will be held in her memory on October 29th from 11am to 2pm at the residence of Robin and Stephanie Elliott, 6688 DeFrame Ct., Arvada, CO 80004. Please join us to share some of our favorite stories and memories, to laugh, to cry and to remember our mother and friend who worked tirelessly for us and loved each of us deeply.