Ronald Neal (Freeman) Hammond, 41, of Craig, died Oct. 10, 2008, in Craig. Ron lived all his life in Colorado.
He was born Jan. 30, 1967, in Delta to Edwin Freeman and Glenna Fae (Hammond) Ridenauer. Shortly after his birth, his parents moved to Craig, where Ron went to preschool. Following his parents' divorce and remarriage of his mother to Tom Hammond, his new family moved to Walsenburg, where Ron grew up.
As a young man, Ron worked for various law enforcement agencies, including as a detention officer in Walsenburg and a guard at the federal SuperMax prison at Florence.
On Dec. 7, 1996, he married Tairah Brown. Two daughters were born to this union.
Ron obtained his CDL and drove for Swift Trucking for a short time. In 1998, Ron and Tairah moved to Meeker, where he worked at various jobs, including Meeker Sand and Gravel as a truck driver.
In 2001, Ron had a driving accident and sustained massive injuries. Flight For Life took him to St. Mary's Hospital in Grand Junction, where he was not expected to survive. With medical care, support of his family and thousands of prayers, Ron beat the odds. He was moved to Pueblo for about two years of rehabilitation. During this time, Ron went to school, became a certified welder, and worked while living in Pueblo.
Following a divorce, Ron returned to Meeker in April 2006 to be closer to family. He re-qualified for, and obtained his CDL, and was again employed by Meeker Sand and Gravel until September 2008, when he purchased a home in Craig. Ron moved to Craig and took employment with Links Trucking, driving one of their contracted trucks at Colowyo Coal, hauling crushed coal from the tipple to the loadout.
Ron was an accomplished artist, doing pen and ink drawings of nature, photography and welded floral sculptures, as well as decorative floor lamps, kitchen racks and porch railings. An excellent woodsman, Ron loved the outdoors. He was an avid fisherman and hunter.
Ron was very involved with his church, and his faith in God was important to him.
Ron is survived by his two daughters, Graicey Mae and Laicye Rose, of Pueblo; mother, Glenna Fae Ridenauer, of Fruita; father, Edwin Freeman (Anna), of Meeker; step-father, Tom Hammond (Ingrid), of Craig; brothers Robert Hammond (fiancee Julie), of Los Angeles, Calif.; David Hammond, of Craig; sister Cindy Hammond, of Trinidad; two step-brothers, Lance Hammond (Mary), of Craig, and Earl Stout (Nikki), of Meeker; step-sister Pennie Planagan (Pat), of Moscow, Idaho; two grandmothers, Lit Anderson, of Craig, and Ada Fae Nichols, of Buerea, Ky.; plus many nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
Ron will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
A memorial service for Ron will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Cochran Memorial Chapel in Meeker.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Ronald Hammond Memorial Fund at any of the First National Bank of the Rockies branches, or mailed to the First National Bank of the Rockies, P.O. Box 600, Meeker, CO 81641-0600.
Friends may sign the online guestbook at www.grantmortuary.com.