Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Widener, 'Westword' Co-Founder, Killed in Crash

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Widener, 'Westword' Co-Founder, Killed in Crash

Article excerpt

A Denver couple and their 19-year-old daughter were killed after being hit by a tractor-trailer on an icy stretch of I-80, the Wyoming Highway Patrol said Sunday.

John David Parr, 59, his wife Sandra Widener, 53, and daughter Chase, 19, died in the chain reaction crash six miles west of Rawlins on Saturday, the patrol said. Their 17-year-old daughter Katy was taken to a Casper hospital in critical condition.

Parr was a Democratic political consultant and had served in significant positions within city and state government and was the co-founder and principle of Civic Results. According to its Web site, Civic Results was formed to fill a "need for an organization that could provide support to government entities, businesses, nonprofits and community groups as they worked to find solutions to increasingly complex and interdependent problems."

Parr also served as president of the National Civic League from 1985 to 1995 and was as a board member of the Denver Downtown Partnership. According to a biography posted on the company's Web site, Parr directed the field organization to help elect Dick Lamm governor of Colorado in 1974 and, in 1983, served as the transition director for Denver Mayor Federico Pena.

Widener was a co-founder of The Westword, an alternative weekly newspaper, and was a former reporter for the Denver Post's Sunday magazine, Empire.

Both Chase and Katy attended East High School. Chase graduated recently and was a sophomore at Wesleyan University in Connecticut. Katy is currently a senior at East.

The family was on its way to Boise, Idaho, for an annual Christmas gathering with Widener's parents and sister.

Mayor John Hickenlooper and his wife, Helen Thorpe issued the following statement upon learning the news:

"We cherish our memories of John and Sandy and their daughter Chase. …

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