Marion Normandy 1933 – 2014

Marion Normandy

Marion (Louise) Kisner Normandy died at the age of 80 at Parkmoor Village Health Care Center, Colorado Springs, Colorado on August 15, 2014, following a brief illness.

Marion Louise Kisner was born on November 27, 1933 in Martinsburg, West Virginia, to Ruth (Thompson) Kisner and Paul Kisner. She was an only child but had many relatives living close by. She developed close friendships with several girls from elementary school and stayed in close contact with them throughout her life.

In 1951 she graduated from Martinsburg Senior High School, and began attending Shepherdstown College in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, where she studied biology. In 1955, she left college to marry Willard Davis Normandy, Jr.

One year later, on their first wedding anniversary, their daughter, Catherine Elaine, was born. Four years later their second daughter was born, Caroline Elizabeth. Elaine and Caroline were raised in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC.

In 1978, Marion began her career in the Federal Government in Washington, DC. She worked in various divisions including FEMA and FAA and retired in 1999 from the Federal Aviation Administration. She moved to California and lived there for five years. In 2004 she moved to Colorado Springs.

She is survived by her two daughters, Elaine Normandy and Caroline Normandy Levenberg, her two sons-in-law, John Heneghan and Edwin Levenberg, and her two grandchildren, Jessica Manning and Anthony Manning.

Magic Carpet Ride (1982 – 2014)


Magic Carpet Ride

I’ve been boarding Magic (an Anglo – Tennessee Walker cross)  for a friend for years. I originally volunteered to board her in her retirement because she never got hurt and she never got sick. Yesterday morning, she was screaming for her breakfast. This morning, she was showing  signs of colic when I went to give the horses their breakfast. After consulting with her owner and vet, she was euthanized around 10:00 am.  Although her ground manners left a bit to be desired, she was an awesome trail horse, search and rescue horse, and field hunter in her time.

Black Forest Regional Park

Black Forest Regional ParkMonday, a friend and I took our dogs to the Black Forest Regional Park. The park is adjacent to the subdivision where the Black Forest Fire of 2013 started and 74% of the park timber burned in that fire. It was closed until fairly recently until walking trails could be made safe for the public.  Pikes Peak is hidden by the burnt, twisted pine.



Sneak Peak at the 21c Library

In Colorado Springs, the Pikes Peak Library District has repurposed a former office building (Digital Equipment Company) into a library that they are calling 21c. On the ground floor are the stacks and amenities of a traditional library, but the second floor is far different. Here one can find a 3-D printer, sewing machines, a video production studio including a green screen setup, high end workstations, a conference room with a touch interactive whiteboard / video conferencing setup, and several different gaming rooms.

Jack and I attending a Sneak Peak reception on Friday night. The library has its grand opening on June 21. While we were at the Sneak Peak, we had our photo taken using the green screen in the video studio.  We picked the background that we wanted to use, then stood in front of the green screen for the photo.

Sneak Peak Photo

One Year Ago

One year ago, as we left the office near Chapel Hills where my mother had an afternoon appointment, I looked north and saw a large plume of smoke. Since we were under extreme fire watch conditions, due to wind, heat and drought, I knew it was very bad. I also realized it must be very close to a friend’s house. At that moment, my friend called on my cell phone. She was about a mile due south of where the fire started. The next few hours were a frenzy of activity: taking my mother home, going to my friend’s place to help her evacuate her horses, and making arrangements at our place for two of her horses. She spent the first night at her house, but came to our house with her dogs, cats and chickens after her utilities were cut off.

My friend was fortunate: since she was south of the fire and the gusts were predominantly from the south that first day, the worst of the fire activity was blown away from her. This was very unfortunate for the rest of Black Forest, since the fire started in the south of the heavily timbered area.

I took this photo from the deck of our house the evening of the first day. That night, I didn’t sleep very well, and kept going out to the deck to watch the flares as the fire torched what I assume was propane tanks.  Although typically fires lay down at night, this one was very active that first night.

Black Forest Fire


On a clear day you can see forever