John Wade Bartmann, 50, of Greeley/Windsor passed away Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014, in a tragic ranch accident while hauling supplies to his sheepherders in a remote area of the Routt National Forest, where his sheep have grazed and he has enjoyed the beauty and challenges of the forest for more than 15 years.
John was born March 3, 1964, to Richard and Judith (Day) Bartmann in Logan, Utah. The family lived in Meeker (Piceance Creek) and Fort Collins. He graduated from high school in Fort Collins. After graduating from Colorado State University with a bachelor’s degree in animal science, he married Sherry (Willson) in 1990, and they moved east of Windsor where they started their home and sheep business, and he continued to work on his master’s degree.
John was extremely involved in his kids’ school, Windsor Charter Academy, serving four years on the board with three as president. He always said kids are our greatest investment, and he wanted to leave a legacy of learning for them, so he has been a key player in developing plans for a new WCA high school.
He managed a cattle feedlot from 1990-1993 before forming JOSH Livestock. He also worked as the manager of Mountain View Lamb Feeders in Eaton. Nothing seemed to deter John from pursuing his passion of working toward the improvement of efficient sheep ranching. The Colorado Wool Growers Association honored John as the 2006 Wool Grower of the Year. In 1997, John bought 1,000 ewes and secured a grazing permit on the Colorado/Wyoming border in between Encampment and Steamboat Springs. He was currently running sheep in the Red Desert of Wyoming in the wintertime and then in the Routt National Forest in the summertime. He loved his work with the sheep industry, and enjoyed the many pleasures of working in the great outdoors. He had a passion for showing his kids the sheep business, and the weekends he spent with them working with sheep are favorite memories for the kids, whether it was hauling supplies to herders, shearing, docking, shipping lambs, building corrals, or even a little fishing or target shooting along the way. Heading to sheep camp was always the highlight of his week.
He is survived by his wife, Sherry Bartmann; son, Shane; daughter Jessica; parents, Dick and Judy Bartmann of La Grange, Wyo; brother, Milton (Coleen) Bartmann of Greeley; sister, Lori Duran; and several aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his grandparents and uncles.
A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 27, at Timberline Church in Fort Collins.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks memorial donations be made to the Shane and Jessica Bartmann memorial foundation in care of Bank of Colorado in Windsor.
Online condolences may be made at www.marksfuneralservice.com.