Herbert Humphreys Stevens, Jr.
Herb was born June 30, 1927 in Springfield, Ohio. The family moved to Evansville, Indiana for two years and then to Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1929. Herb attended school in south Minneapolis until a new home was built in St. Louis Park. He graduated from high school in 1946. After graduation he enlisted in the United States Army and basic training in Ft. Bliss, Texas. He was assigned to the Army of Occupation in Japan. Returning to Minnesota, he enrolled at the University of Minnesota, where he graduated with the Centennial Class of 1951 from the Institute of Technology. He was a member of Triangle Fraternity, Engineers and Architects.
Herb met Elaine in 1949, while she was living next door, at the home of Jim and Hope Mitchell, while attending Minneapolis Business College. She was a nanny for their two daughters. The eldest daughter, Bam, kept talking about the people next door, including Marge and Herb, giving Elaine the impression that they were a married couple. Marge was married to Jerry Dirks. Friendly conversation and dating followed, with Jim Mitchell loaning Herb a car for dating.
Three months after college graduation, Herb and Elaine were married at First Lutheran Church, Olivia, Minnesota. It was an evening wedding with a reception in the church basement. Most receptions were simple, ice cream, cake, nuts and mints. Hope Mitchell poured coffee. And of course, the church basement ladies hosted the reception.
Herb's family were members of the Cathedral Church of St. Mark (Episcopal) where he was confirmed and then a crucifer for worship. In our transfers, we became active members of the Lutheran Church. Friendships made through our churches are continued blessings.
Our first move and apartment was in District Heights, Maryland Moves followed to Lincoln, NE, Columbus, Ohio, Minneapolis, Portland, OR, Slidell, LA, and to Littleton, 40 years ago.
Four daughters arrived in the cities of Lincoln, Columbus, Minneapolis and Portland. Herb was a fantastic father, often getting up at night with them for their needs. The years added sons-in-law, Scott, Bob, Gary and Chris. Eight grandchildren add the grand total of eighteen to our family.
Woodworking and gardening were two of Herb's favorite things to do. Traveling by car with the family meant trips to see the Minnesota family. The grandparents were thrilled and seeing cousins for the girls was important. Our overseas travel included cruises, two trips to Australia where we established our friendship with the Bega-Littleton Sister City Exchange, New Zealand, a first trip in 1990 to the Scandinavian countries and visiting Elaine's relatives and our friends. In 2005 , we and ten from our family, visited Sweden during Midsummer, and seeing family and friends.
Herb was Swedish by marriage. He always said that he could speak his own language, English! He attended Swedish class and called it the "eating and drinking society" because of the refreshments. All of the food served at Swedish Club of Denver, except lutfisk, were his tummy favorites. He was proud that we had family members participation and two granddaughters were Lucia Queens.
The joy of Herb's working for the U.S. Geological Survey, as a research hydrologist, working on the Columbia River and the Mississippi River, kept a small part of American history alive for him. He retired in December of 1989 and enjoyed almost 24 years of retirement. His last Minnesota trip was in October of 2010.
Herb died peacefully on July 24, 2013 at 1:15 AM in the loving presence of family members, wonderful nurses, and doctors in the Emergency Room at Littleton Adventist Hospital.