Obituary: Karen ‘Gad’ Gadberry

Karen 'Gad' Gadberry
Karen 'Gad' Gadberry
Provided Photo

December 17, 1958 – September 17, 2023

Karen ‘Gad’ Gadberry, 64, passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends on the morning of Sunday, September 17, 2023, at the Denver Hospice Inpatient Care Center.

Adopted into a loving family as a baby, her parents Thelma and Howard Gadberry instilled in her a love of nature, art, travel and adventure They also taught her about the joy of helping others. Together with her little brother Alan, they explored the country in the family station wagon. On the family’s intrepid expeditions, Karen developed a lifelong love of America’s National Parks and a can-do attitude that served her well in the years to come. Karen was a multi-sport athlete in high school and college and went to the University of Northern Colorado on a bowling scholarship where she studied Physical Education, Coaching and English. After college she worked her way up from professional ski bum to Guest Services Director at Winter Park Resort, Vice President of Human Resources at Intrawest and lastly Vice President, People and Culture at Pursuit, a leading-edge adventure travel company.

Kindness, fun and adventure were at the heart of everything Karen did. She trekked the Himalayas, chased the Northern Lights in Alaska, and covered thousands of miles by pedal power and Harley Davidson. Along the way she made countless friends who reveled in her free spirit, wry sense of humor, thoughtfulness and generosity.

When she met and married Michelle, she not only found the love of her life, she also found a kindred free spirit who shared her love of travel, good food, good friends and sassy French Bulldogs – Ocho and Leon. Karen is survived by her loving wife, Michelle Finnerty; her brother and sister-in-law, Alan and Kelly Gadberry; niece and her husband, Kayla and David Walter; and French Bulldog/Best Friend, Leon Redbone.
She was preceded in death by her mother and father, Thelma and Howard Gadberry; and French Bulldog/Best Friend, Ocho.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to The Sherpa Support Foundation. Your donation will help improve the lives of the Sherpa families that Karen fell in love with on her travels through the mountains of Nepal.

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