Elsie Jean (Simonich) Griffith, age 85 of Salida, passed away on Tuesday April 3, 2018 at Columbine Manor Care Center in Salida. She was born September 9, 1932 in Pueblo, CO to John and Katherine (Bussia) Simonich. She grew up in Pueblo. She was the youngest of 5 siblings. She graduated from Central High in 1950. She was an avid swimmer, putting on Synchronized swimming shows at the YMCA.
She married Fred Griffith February 3, 1951 at St. Francis Catholic Church in Pueblo. She worked as a telephone operator and then as a secretary for the CF&I until the birth of their first daughter, Julie Denise. In 1966, they moved to Salida and bought the Shawano Motel from Albert Spino. In that same year, they welcomed another daughter Susanne. They owned and operated the Shawano Motel for 10 years. In 1977 Elsie and Fred became franchisee of Kentucky Fried Chicken. Throughout the years she enjoyed working in the store, volunteered with the Hospital Auxiliary, Daughters of Isabella, Bishops Guild and Alter and Rosary Society. She was also a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church and Sweet Adeline singing group. Mrs. Griffith was also an avid bridge player. After they sold Kentucky Fried Chicken to their girls, they loved to travel and spend time over at their cabin on Grey Back Mountain by La Veta Pass.
Mrs. Griffith was preceded in death by her parents, sisters Matilda (Tilly) Hostter, Helen Prijatel and Mary Willis. She is survived by her husband Fred of 67 years, Julie Spezze and Susanne (Jeff) Denwalt. Grandchildren Olivia Denwalt, Jacob Denwalt and Lily Spezze. Brother Edward Simonich of Pueblo, CO and numerous nieces and Nephews.
Recitation of the Holy Rosary is set for 10:30 AM Friday April 20, 2018 at St. Joseph Catholic Church with Mass to follow at 11:00 AM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the St. Joseph Catholic Church Organ Fund through Lewis and Glenn. On line condolences may be sent to the family at lewisandglenn.com. Arrangements are with Lewis and Glenn Funeral Home.