Thermopolis Independent Record - Your source for news in Hot Springs County

Deborah Ann 'Debbie' Axtell


Deborah Ann 'Debbie' Axtell

Deborah Ann "Debbie" Axtell, 69, died suddenly Thursday, May 14, 2020, at the Wyoming Medical Center in Casper.

Born July 4, 1950, in Laramie, Wyo., she was the oldest of 7 children of Robert and Mary Lou (Young) Korkow.  Following high school she attended the University of Wyoming until marrying Warren Clifford Axtell, August 26, 1972, in Hannah, Wyo.  The couple returned to Warren's hometown of Thermopolis, Wyo.

Debbie later completed her degree at the University.  For two years she was a physical therapist for Gottsche.  She became a substitute teacher in the school system teaching English.  For over 30 years, she managed Axtell Ranches. In addition she taught swimming classes for Arthritics at the Star Plunge and also was a volunteer for the home delivered meals from the Senior Center.  She served on the Recreation District Board, NRCS board (conservation district), Hot Springs County School Board, Hospital Board, and was an active member of the St. Francis Catholic Church. 

She enjoyed swimming, hanging with her grandkids on the mountain and loved the outdoors.  An avid reader, she was also a great listener, a quality revered by her friends and family.

She is survived by her children, Warren "Chip" (Jennifer) Axtell, Dianne and Darlene "Darcy" Axtell, all of Thermopolis; grandchildren, Spencer, Audrey, Lance and Ryan Axtell; brothers, Bob Korkow of Loveland, Colo., Larry Korkow of Hannah, Wyo., and Burt Korkow of Green River, Wyo .; sisters, Vicki Korkow and Val Black, both of Hannah and Vonnie Romano of Washington state. 

She was predeceased by her husband in 1982; parents, Bob and Mary Lou Korkow; niece, Kelly Black; and baby granddaughter, Abigail Axtell.

A private Mass of Christian Burial and Rosary will be held with Father Randy Oswald officiating.  An outdoor memorial service will be held May 22, 2020, 3 p.m. at the ranch, 1583 Cowboy Mine Road, officiated by Deacon Richard Wilson of Ft. Morgan, Colo.  A luncheon will follow.

Memorials may be made in Debbie's name to the H.S. Co. Senior Center, P.O.Box 747, Thermopolis, 82443. Mortimore Funeral Home is assisting the family and messages may be offered at


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