Lester Harold Kraus

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Lester Harold Kraus, 87, a part-time resident of Payson, died Aug. 5, 2007 at Carla's Care Center in Montrose, Colo.

He was born Dec. 30, 1919 to Louis and Moria (Payne) Kraus near Fort Morgan, Colo.

After graduating high school in Fort Morgan, he went on to attend the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Colo. where he obtained his bachelor's degree in education. From there he continued his education in Gunnison, Colo. at Western State University, where he received both his master's and his doctorate in education. He then enlisted and served in the United States Navy, where he was stationed on Treasure Island.

He and his late wife Effie Jewel (Egbert) Kraus (1979) moved to Montrose, Colo. in 1951. He was the principal of Morgan Elementary and served as the first principal of Pomona Elementary, where he remained until his retirement from education in 1980.

Mr. Kraus met Betty McBratney in 1986 at a surprise birthday party in Star Valley. They married June 17, 1987 in a beautiful setting on the island of Kauai, Hawaii.

Surviving family includes his wife, Betty Kraus of Payson; daughter, Kay Johansen of Lakewood, Colo.; stepson, Steve (Barbara) Thompson of Phoenix; granddaughters, Margaret (Bill) Benson of Aurora, Colo., Becky (Steve) Burns of Lincoln, Neb., Shawna (Allen) Patkowski of Phoenix and Hallie Thompson of Phoenix. He is also survived by seven great-grandchildren plus one on the way, as well as six great-great-grandchildren.

His parents, his first wife, and one sister, Dolly May Kraus, preceded him in death.

Services and burial were Aug. 10, 2007 in Montrose, Colo.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the charity of your choice.

Arrangements were handled by Valley Lawn Funeral Home in Montrose, Colo.

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