Just Hall

Judy Hall    (Courtesy photo)

On Aug. 24, 2021, Telluride local Judith (“Judy”) Mary Hall, 79, passed quietly in her bed, after an astonishingly graceful four-year struggle with pancreatic cancer. She was wrapped in love for her journey by her husband, son, and sister who were all by her side. Judy is survived by her husband Warner, sister Pixie, son Trevor, daughter-in-law Cara, granddaughters Harper and Casey, nephew Adam and family, niece Ryan and family, sister-in-law Jane and family, and stepdaughters Betsy and Amy and their families.

Judy was born in 1941 just outside Toronto, Canada to her father Edward and mother Fern. She was the eldest of three siblings, Elizabeth “Pixie,” and their youngest brother Christopher who died far too young in a car accident at age 27. Her childhood was one of exploration, adventure, and wonder, which ignited a life of creativity and intrepid strength. As a child, she was often thrust into a parental role for her younger siblings, and this gave birth to a trademark poise beyond her years. She was a bright soul, and a rock-solid spirit from the beginning.

After graduating from Toronto’s respected Bishop Strong School, she attended the Ontario School of Art where she won numerous awards for her architectural drawings and visual artwork. On a ski trip as a recent graduate, she met her first husband, Larry. She also discovered her more lasting true love, skiing! Work brought them to Chicago, Illinois, and in 1971 she gave birth to her only child, her son Trevor, who quickly became her most heartfelt pride and joy. This relationship grew into a lifetime of honest love, 46 straight years of skiing together, and a steady admiration for one another that carried on for her lifetime, and now beyond.

In 1988, feeling that the grind of city life did not fill her soul, and after the passing of her own mother, Judy took a daring leap, leaving behind her steady career as a set designer for the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Geraldo Rivera, and (Trevor’s favorite) The Bozo Circus Show, among countless others, to move to a small ski town in Southwest Colorado. This was an opportunity for rebirth, self-discovery, and a chance to realize one’s true self. She had little money, only a friend or two to speak of in town, and a heart so open that the community could not help but to embrace her. She became a staple on main street running the Golden West Gallery, was an interior designer who made her mark on countless homes and properties, and was consummate design volunteer for community events. She taught skiing, she hiked, played tennis, traveled, took stunning photos, and she made lifelong friends. In her own words, as she once wrote in her journal: “I am finally becoming the person I think people perceive me to be.”

Halfway through her journey of mountain-style self-discovery she met her now husband, Warner Paige. Together they shared a romance, a partnership, a true love, and a loyalty that created a sense of earned completion in her life. They built a home. They traveled. They grew a family. That love, that marriage, truly capped her life of no regret. Her love for Warner is everlasting.

Judy’s final chapter was one of simply being “Gramma Judy” to her two beaming granddaughters who will always know it was she who bought them their first pair of skis, and whose love will always make them feel eternally special. 

Judy was a gift to us all, not because her accomplishments and accolades shone brighter than others, but because in her own quiet, stylish, soft-spoken, and unsung way she showed us that kindness, forgiveness, friendship, and love are the traits that leave the most unshakable of legacies. We will miss her dearly, every day.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Open Roads Academy, which gives underprivileged children the chance to travel and experience their own self-discovery in nature.

To learn more, visit: openroads.org