Commute teaches appreciation for Craig

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Craig resident Pat Stephenson spends up to 13 hours away from home each day, but she said it makes her appreciate home more.

She works as a fire technician for the city of Steamboat Springs and her husband, Roy, works at Chapman Automotive in Craig. They have lived here for about seven years.

Even if she had the chance to live in Steamboat, she said she prefers Craig because of its laid-back atmosphere.

"It's a lot less hectic and a lot more affordable," she added.

Crummy weather or unexpected traffic makes the commute annoying sometimes, but she said she usually doesn't mind it.

"It's time for me to get myself together so I can enjoy being home," she said.

When Pat and Roy are not working, Pat enjoys watching Roy perform cowboy action shooting. They both get involved in the activities by dressing up in Old West attire and using aliases: Lady Bountiful and Big Timber.

They also are experienced country-western dancers. They used to teach classes at Colorado Northwestern Community College and now teach private lessons.

"When we're practicing, we're pretty good," Stephenson said. "But when we're not, we need to practice!"

Pat and Roy have three grown children and four grandchildren who live in Denver. Her 12-year-old granddaughter, Lisa Rocchio, has been in her thoughts a lot recently.

Rocchio was chosen by her teachers to travel to France and England for two weeks as part of the school's people-to-people program.

"She is in our minds a lot, and we hope she is safe," Stephenson said.

For the Fourth of July, Pat and Roy are going camping, which is one of their favorite pastimes.

Getting away from the city is much more enjoyable than fireworks, she said.

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