Ellen Van Ness Seymour

Ellen Van Ness Seymour, 88, passed away June 19, 2024 in Denver, Colorado, where she was a resident at Balfour Senior Living. There she enjoyed the company of staff, friends and family along with sleeping in late, and telling her favorite stories. Ellen recovered well from a massive stroke in 2017 and was strong in her pursuit in maintaining her personality, independence and love of music. Her passing was peaceful, from natural causes.

Ellen was born Ellen Melinda Huse, March 14, 1936 and lived most her adult life in Denver, Colorado. She grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota and also lived with as a newlywed with a 1-year old in Taiwan and Hong Kong. She was a Summit School graduate and earned a Master’s in English from University of California at Berkley. While living in Observatory Park, she was part of the University Park Community Council, as well as varied PTA and other groups. Professionally, she was an engaged, insightful and successful real estate broker specializing in historic homes in SE Denver. She was also a very successful entrepreneur, owning and managing many rental houses.

Her diverse and wide range of interests and passions included: really enjoying a good thunderstorm, being an artist of many types, performing and listening to classical and ragtime music, deepening her historical knowledge of her community and family background, reading the Denver Post regularly and New Yorker weekly, writing notes, letters and journals, telling detailed stories of her childhood and life, traveling with her 2nd husband, Mr. David A. Seymour, inviting others to share food and chat, growing beautiful lilacs, loving dogs, avidly collecting interesting objects, antiques and correspondence, being a loving mother to her children and lots of other kids, appreciating and generously giving small acts of kindness, and indulging in the comforts of home.  Friends and family remember her as appreciating everyone and everything that surrounded her. She was the gentlest of souls who was personable, supportive, and loving. Ellen had a presence and dedication to being herself, charming everyone she ever met with her focused interest, lighthearted wit and intellectual passion.

Ellen was preceded in death by her parents Mary Prudence Nims and Harry Goodhue Huse as well as her husband David Seymour and her beloved son Stephen Van Ness. She is survived by her son Thomas Van Ness (Karey Lontz), her brother Thomas Huse, her niece Ann Huse, nephew Charles Huse (Olive Huang), her cousins Cynthia Nims, Amanda Nims and Calvin Nims, her first husband Peter Van Ness (Anne Gunn) and her grandog Mary. She was a loving second mother to Harry Van Ness, Andy Cross, Dan Riffel and countless others. She was also a second grandmother to Savannah Lontz, Johnny Lontz, Abby Cross and more. Also surviving are many other ‘kids’ who she was a 2nd mom for – you know who you are. She will be dearly missed by her Summit classmates living and passed, especially her dearest friend Ginnie  – her friend of 86 years, partner in crime and soulmate.

The Van Ness family gives special thanks to Balfour Assisted Living staff, Bloom Healthcare, Adventures in Eldercare, and Physical Care Associates for caring for Ellen like a family member. They would also like to thank Bloom Hospice and The Natural Funeral home for the kind support in attending to logistical matters and protocol in a gentle, respectful manner.

Memorial donations can be made in Ellen’s honor to the The Dumb Friends League, The Denver Brass, and History Colorado. A celebration of life will take place at a later date.

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