Ross Allan Worley

WorleyRoss Allan Worley, 73, on June 21, 2021, in Durango, Colo. Ross was born on October 5, 1947, to Charles and Elizabeth Worley in Omaha, Neb. Ross was the oldest of three sisters (Susan, Dawn, and Faith) and two brothers (Henry and Tim). Ross’s father was a conscientious objector during WWII. The family lived in Nebraska, Oregon, and Ohio before settling in Cedaredge, Colo. Ross’s parents instilled in their children the values of living simply and peacefully. During the mid 1970s, Ross joined Durango Worship Group. He became a member of Durango Meeting in 1990.

Ross received his bachelor’s in humanities from Fort Lewis College in Durango in 1979. He earned a master’s in instructional technology at the University of Connecticut. He returned to Fort Lewis College and was instrumental in helping the college move successfully into the digital era. Ross retired from Fort Lewis College in 2003 following 32 years of service.

Ross married Irene Ruiz de Esparza in 1977. In 1985, they adopted ten-year-old Noah Ross Worley and his sister, nine-year-old Tammy Regina Worley. When Ross and Irene divorced in 1993, Ross was awarded custody of the then teenagers.

Ross served Durango Meeting in many capacities. As clerk of Peace and Social Concerns Committee, he led Friends in assembling food boxes for undocumented families in the Durango area. As a First-day school teacher, he spent years teaching Quaker history, Biblical history, and the teachings of Jesus. Adult Friends were enlightened when, following meeting for worship, young Friends shared what they had learned that morning.

Perhaps Ross’s greatest contribution to Durango Meeting was the many hours he spent with other Friends to find a location for the meetinghouse, then working with the architect and builder until its completion in the fall of 1996.

Ross was a voracious reader who delighted in sharing his books. He introduced many members of Durango Meeting to Quaker history. Ross studied the Spanish language and took several trips to Mexico to visit with friends.

Ross was loved and respected by members and attenders of Durango Meeting and is greatly missed. He will be remembered for his warmth, kindness, faithfulness, and wonderful sense of humor.

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