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Obituary - Dr. Lauren Grasmick

Memorial photo for Dr. Lauren Grasmick.


Dr. Lauren Grasmick was born in Eads, on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, 1949, the eldest child of John J. and Lynn Lefferdink. Lauren enjoyed being the older sister to her younger brother, John. For all of their lives, she especially enjoyed checking in with John and giving him, what she considered, great advice.

Lauren attended Eads Elementary and Junior High Schools. She was blessed with many talents, among them being her musical ability. She was an accomplished pianist, playing many recitals and church functions.

Her love of horses led to her becoming an outstanding equestrian. Lauren barrel raced, and was selected as a member of the Kiowa County Fair Royalty when she was 14. During her youth, she was particularly close to her two horses, Peanuts, a Shetland who liked to kick, and Mitzi, her barrel horse, who broke her heart when Mitzi broke her leg.

In 1964, the family moved to Lamar, and Lauren began her sophomore year at Lamar High School. She graduated from Lamar High School in 1967. She attended Colorado State University in Fort Collins, graduating in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology. In college, Lauren participated in several organizations, focusing on fighting for equal rights related to race and gender. Civil rights and equality remained a passion of hers throughout her life.

In 1974, Lauren met the love of her life, Bill Grasmick. Nine months later, they were married. Years later, they had two children, Meagan Elisabeth and Sara Katheryn, and eventually they had two grandchildren, Austin Elaine and Ford William. Lauren and Bill were married for nearly 50 years.

Also during those years, Lauren accomplished many achievements as a student, teacher, college administrator, and community leader. Her accomplishments included earning a Masters of Arts with emphasis in Sociology from the University of Northern Colorado in 1982. She was the Vice President for Instruction at the Lamar Community College from 1990 to 2000. In 2004, she was awarded a Ph.D. in Education and Human Resource Studies with a specialization in Community College Leadership from CSU. After retirement, she worked part-time as a research consultant with CSU, and as a victim advocate.

In retirement, she dedicated her time to her daughters, grandchildren, husband, and dog, Zen. She always availed herself to others, and could frequently be found having lengthy phone calls with friends. A constant renaissance woman, she worked to expand her world view through literature, yoga, and meditation practice. She also enjoyed engaging in intellectual - and at times slightly adversarial - debates with her sons-in-law, Damon Semmens and Alex Rodrigues, whom she adored.

Lauren was artistic, smart, poised, independent, and courageous. This was shown in her writing, intellect, values, fashion sense, love of art, achievements, and home décor.

She also was fiercely loyal, and fought for people and values which she believed deserved to be fought for.

Lauren passed away February 22, 2024at her home at the age of 74.

She is preceded in death by her parents and her aunt, Elizabeth Lefferdink.

Lauren is survived by her husband, Bill Grasmick of Lamar; daughters, Meagan (Alex Rodrigues) Grasmick and Sara (Damon) Semmens; grandchildren, Austin Elaine and Ford William all of Denver; and her brother, John S. Lefferdink of Lamar. She is also survived by numerous brothers- and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, cousins, and a host of friends.

A celebration of life was held February 28, 2024, at the Peacock Family Chapel with Ian Blacker of the Lamar Christian Church officiating. Interment followed at the Fairmount Cemetery in the Veteran’s Section.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Lamar Area Hospice, either direct or in care of the funeral home office.

Arrangements were under the direction of Peacock Funeral Home.