1950 ~ 2019
Colton was born in Berea, OH outside of Cleveland in 1950. He started his western migration in 1972 when he and his brother Bryan quit their “Go nowhere jobs” and moved to their mothers’ home in California. They both enrolled at Fresno City College. Having always loved working with wood, Colton chose to make carpentry his career and as a result, enrolled in two carpentry classes. One was an "on the job training" class where he heard during his first semester how badly carpenters were needed in the Truckee area. After that semester, with his few tools and his 1968 MGB/GT he headed to Truckee, joined the union, and proceeded to lose his first four jobs. The fifth time was a charm where he made the connection with Dart Industries on the original Tahoe Donner Condos project.
From the beginning, Colton worked and immersed himself early in this underdeveloped downtown community. He was resident carpenter of the new Bar of America as it made its way to the corner of Bridge and Donner Pass Road in 1974. He worked on that project and its interior for the next 24 years. He helped save the Old Coffee Garage Building and rebuilt it into what became the home of the original Truckee River Bank, and consequently the current home of Alibi on the corner of Jibboom and Bridge Streets. He became the go to cabinet maker and finish carpenter for the Squaw Valley Lodge and countless businesses and home owners in the area. During the early 80’s Colton began his furniture making efforts and sold interior craftsman products to residents with the sale of his exotic wood custom jewelry and hope chest boxes. His skills were lauded by all in the community and as a result, Colton became an artisan on many different fronts and with several differing mediums; his watercolors, inlay wood landscapes, hook and loop landscapes were equally coveted by all who knew him.
Colton is survived by his brothers Bryan of Salt Lake, UT, Christopher of Rosemont, MN and Sister Sandra of Ogden, UT. He is predeceased by his mother Elizabeth of MT Airy, NC and father Keith of Mitchell, SD. He leaves a grateful community of friends, customers and admirers of his craftsmanship and art. The fabric of our town will be forever altered with his departure.
Colton’s remains will be dispersed here in Truckee and in the Black Rock Desert during the next Burning Man. A celebration of life will be announced for later this summer.
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