Thelma (Tudy) Worker


October 30, 1930 – June 16, 2021

Thelma Diane Borud Worker passed away and joined her beloved, Raymond Worker in Heaven, on June 16, 2021.

Thelma Worker’s Celebration of Life will take place on July 2, 2021, at 10 a.m. at The Feedstore Church, 4900 E CR 2.5, Monte Vista Colo. Interment will follow at the San Luis Valley Cemetery and a simple luncheon at the Center Kiwanis Hall.

In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to your local library or your local animal rescue organization in Thelma’s memory. Condolences and memories of Thelma may be shared at

Thelma Diane Borud was born Oct. 20, 1930, the daughter of George and Esther (Sveum) Borud of Fosston, Minn., the oldest of five children. She was raised and attended school in Fosston. After high school graduation, Thelma attended Bemidji State College and received her Associate Arts degree in December 1950. She then taught third grade for two years at the Chippewa Indian, Red Lake, Minn., Elementary School.

Her Red Lake experience led to a lifelong appreciation of tribal arts and culture including her favorite children’s author, Byrd Baylor. Thelma then decided to accept a position teaching school in Del Norte, Colo. It was in Del Norte that Thelma met Raymond Worker and they were married in May 1953. They lived in Del Norte for five years before moving to Sargent farming community, north of Monte Vista, Colo.

Thelma was an avid reader and was involved in multiple organizations while she raised her children. PTA, Sargent Homemakers, Catholic Church, Brownies, Cub Scouts, 4-H and volunteering at the Sargent Elementary Library.

While driving a school bus to pay for college expenses, she attended Adams State College receiving her BA in Education in 1969. Thelma began teaching once again — this time in the Monte Vista, Colo., schools. She taught high school and Jr. high special education before moving to the sixth, fifth and fourth grades and the Kindergarten Chapter 1. Thelma enjoyed reading from her collections of Rudyard Kipling and Bryd Baylor books to her students and grandchildren. 

After retiring from education in 1991, Thelma and Ray began their extended travels throughout the US and enjoyed traveling with family and friends. Their international travel vacations included Japan, Austria, the Netherlands, and other European countries. Ray passed in 1998 just shy of their 45th wedding anniversary.  

After 67 years in the San Luis Valley, Thelma and her little dog (Dukey) moved to Highland Trails, Broomfield, Colo., and for the last few years was a resident at Libby Bortz in Littleton, Colo., where Thelma passed away peacefully in front of her window while reading one of her many books.

Thelma is survived by and will be missed by her five children: Esther Worker of Broomfield, Colo., Lars Worker of Mesa, Ariz., Warren (Harriet) Worker of Viking, Minn., Andrew (Cheryl) Worker of Gallup, N.M., and Erick (Dewindra) Worker of Highlands Ranch, Colo.; beloved grandchildren: Chris (Kathy) Hamblen, Rebecca Hamblen, Jennifer (Steve) Hamblen, Thomas (Yingjie Li) Worker-Braddock, Dewey (Heidi) Worker, Ben (Kara) Worker, Jim (Karina) Worker, JD (Tatiana) Worker, Kyla (Jake) Montano, Levin, Kenosha, and Marrick Worker; and beloved great-grandchildren: Cameron Hamblen, Ethan Hamblen Crafton, Hanna Crafton, Jimmy Smart, Madison and Raymond Worker, Oliver Worker, Winston and Porter Worker, Auden Worker, Harley Worker, Drew and Shelby Montano.

Thelma is survived by siblings: Phyllis Ertz and Gerald (Colleen) Borud, Sister in Laws, Elaine Borud and Jane Worker.  

Thelma was proceeded in death and will be welcomed into Heaven by Raymond F. Worker, her parents George and Esther (Sveum) Borud; in-laws George and Eleanor Worker; and siblings Gene Borud, Shirley Borud, and infant brother George; daughter-in-law Mika Kawahira; sister- and brothers-in-laws Marlyss Borud, Nick Ertz, George and Donna Worker, Howard Worker, Betty Worker, Beth Worker, Bill and Evelyn Worker, Budde Worker; and several nieces and nephews.