COBWEB CORNERS: Have you seen Woody?

By Mel McFarland

       Now, most of these columns have a bit of humor in them, but this one is mostly serious. There is an old fellow I have known since 1962 that I can not find. His name is Woody. I know some of you know already who I mean. Just in case, here is more.
       Woody is a Westsider, born here some years ago, about 80. He attended Whittier, and that was about it. He went to work for the Midland Terminal, and worked there many years. Later he went to the Rio Grande. I met him in Pueblo, where he janitored at the college. I really got to know him when I was working on my first book on the Colorado Midland. Right off, he set about to get me to write about the Midland Terminal. He was a great help, and rounded up lots of information for me. In fact one whole chapter started off as an eight-hour interview with him. He also started me on a list of employees, which is in the back of the book.
       Once the book came out, it did not stop him. He kept sending me new things he found. I remember running into a gent at the old hardware store on Colorado Avenue. He was not too impressed."You talked too much to Woody. You should have talked to me. I would have told you some better stuff!" He did not give me his name. I wish he had!
        Anyway, Woody made regular visits to Old Colorado City from his home in Pueblo. He would ride up on the bus, and walk the streets for hours, even up to Manitou. If he saw a familiar house, he would stop for a visit, hoping an old friend was still there. Sometimes that was not the case. He told several children of an old friend here and there that if he got too old to take care of himself he would look them up.
       Word went through friends in Pueblo that he was gone. No one had seen him for weeks. Finally, one friend knocked on his door. "No, Woody has moved to Colorado Springs." Then word went out to his friends here, "Nope, haven't seen him." Several of us did some searching - shelters, nursing homes and so on. No luck, but the police could take a report. We did not do that, maybe we should have. A cemetery person said, "Sure, he is in Fairview." But I already knew he planned ahead, and he is not there. If you recognize Woody and have a thought, let me know here at the Pioneer.