In Memory of Chuck Bowen’s Cousin, Larry Pletcher, Whose Family Story Plays A Pivotal Role In Our Book

Larry Pletcher – Photo from Grant Mortuary

By Mike Bowen

Chuck Bowen’s cousin, Larry Pletcher, recently passed away. He is mentioned in our book. 

When Chuck and his brother Greg were little kids, they went with their grandma and grandpa to Craig, CO for Larry and Sharon’s wedding in 1963. 

This picture of the group at their wedding shows Chuck and Greg dressed in nice suits and ties. Greg is in front and Chuck is standing behind him. 

Another photo shows his cousin Larry and wife, Sharon, his grandpa and grandma, and other relatives. 

Larry was born July 16, 1939 in Oklahoma and passed away December 16, 2023 in Grand Junction, CO. He grew up in Perryton, TX. He and Sharon made their home in Craig, which is where they lived throughout their marriage.    

Larry grew up with his dad after the passing of his mother when he was a little boy. 

From our book:

June 12, 1945  

Booker, TX

Three days before Daddy’s plane accident

Daddy’s sister Anna Beth, her husband, and little boy, Larry, lived in Wichita. They went back to Booker to help with wheat harvest and stayed in a relative’s abandoned house. A windmill pumped water to the corrals—a clogged pipe kept it from getting to the cattle. Perryton Liquefied Gas, already there to make a delivery, attempted to unclog the line. It seemed to be an easy fix—connect the butane hose to the pipe and give it a quick blast. Alone in the house, Anna Beth prepared dinner for the crew. Little did they know that pipeline also went to the house. It exploded, and she ran out engulfed in flames. After several weeks in the hospital, she received a blood transfusion. It turned out Grandpa’s blood didn’t match. Daddy didn’t know about the accident or her passing until he received the telegram in August.

Sometimes memories are too hard. That’s probably why Grandpa sold his ranch to his brother-in-law and bought the ranch in Colorado.

We Found the Lost Sand Creek Site

The story about Larry’s mother is a tough read—it was a catalyst to the Bowens coming to Colorado. The account of Chuck’s grandpa selling the Texas ranch to move out to southeast Colorado is in our book. 

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