Ellen Rae Byers Livingston was born on April 25, 1932 in Logan, Ill., to George Elsworth and Marie Wilson Byers. Her parents moved to Dragerton, Utah, (now East Carbon City) in 1944 with their seven children, where her father began to work in the coal mines.
Ellen attended school in Carbon County and graduated from Carbon High School in 1950. She married Robert D. Livingston (Bob) of Dragerton, Utah on Aug. 27, 1950. As a young bride she followed Bob as they moved around from military base to military base while Bob was stationed in the Army. After military life they made their home in Price, Utah and in 1962 moved to Moab, Utah, where Ellen was a stay-at-home mom raising her three children and Bob worked at Texas Gulf Sulfur. The couple started their own business known as Livingston Painters until their retirement in 1997.
Ellen loved fishing trips with the family and her adventuresome hunting trips with longtime friend Diane Norman. The two shared stories just before Ellen passed away about their hunting trips and the trouble they could find their ways in and out of.
In 1998, Bob and Ellen moved to Grand Junction, Colo., where they had hoped to spend their retirement years together in their new home. But all too soon, that dream turned into tragedy after tragedy and in November of 2011, Ellen, due to health problems, had to come stay at the home of her daughter here in Moab. She missed her home and had dreams of someday being able to once again go back to it and live out her days, but that dream was not to be.
Ellen was the happiest while watching a good football game, or throwing a fishing pole into a lake in her younger years. She could out play old Solitaire in the days of using playing cards and later on with her computer. Crosswords puzzles were always a welcome challenge to her.
Ellen is survived by her twin brother, Allan Byers (Marge, deceased) of Lombard, Ill. and brother, Glenn Byers (LaRay) of Moab, Utah; son, Gary Livingston (Joyce) of Las Vegas, Nev.; daughter, Sherilyn Sowell (Mike, deceased) of Moab, Utah; sister-in-law, Donna Carlson of Price, Utah; and an aunt, Katherine Cumerford (Aunt Kitty) of Jacksonville, Fla. She is also survived by 10 grandchildren, 23 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
She is preceded in death by her husband of 59 years, Robert D. Livingston (Bob), who died on April 27, 2009. She is also preceded in death by a daughter, Deanne McGuffee of Moab Utah; sisters, Vera Carey, (Rafel, deceased) Auburn, Calif., Shirley Wharff (Ray, deceased) of Salt Lake City, Utah and Glenda Vigil Richardson (George) of Death Valley, Calif.; brother, Tommy Byers (Maurine) of Murrietta, Calif.; and three grandchildren, Kevin Holter (Jennifer), Robert “Cleve” Sowell and Kelly Sowell, all of Moab, Utah. In a ironic twist of fate, the couple’s first child, a son, was born “sleeping,” also on April 27, 1951 and is resting in Ft. Riley, Kansas.
Ellen showed courage and strength for her family during the last few months of her life. She missed her husband dearly and mourned the many losses of children and grandchildren and even though she did not want to die, she graciously accepted her calling.
The family would like to thank Moab Regional Hospital, Dr. Gary Gardner, Grand County Hospice team, Grand County Meals on Wheels, Dr. Ray Andrew and staff, Dr. Jonas Munger, Kimmerle-Hefner Funeral Home, Spanish Valley Mortuary, LDS Church 2nd Ward, Diane Norman, Janet Williams, Sharon Adams and Jana Flynn for all the love, support and care they showed our mom, grandma, sister and aunt.
Memorial services will be held at Kimmerle Funeral Home at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 9, in Moab. Afterwards, a luncheon will be provided for by the LDS Church on 400 North.
Ellen will be laid to rest at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Grand Junction, Colo. on May 9, at 3 p.m., where a small memorial to see her to her final resting place will take place. Family and friends are invited.