Obituary for Caroline Louise Orman of Loveland
Caroline Louise Orman, 85, died May 20, 2020, of Parkinson’s Disease at Medical Center of the Rockies, Loveland, Colorado, leaving her family and friends to carry her indomitable spirit onward, remembering her many accomplishments, shared experiences, humor and wit.
Orman was born in Downers Grove, IL on Dec. 1, 1934 to Carleton Frederick Nadelhoffer and Harriet Esther Wilson, who lovingly raised her and her two older brothers Carleton and Herbert on the family dairy farm near Lisle, IL. Her childhood was spent doing farm chores, caring for the animals and dutifully studying for school. Any idle time would find Caroline playing in the woods, drawing what she saw around her, or curled up with a good book, but never far from her two brother’s loving protective gaze. Caroline’s early education was at the Tamarack one-room country school, and Downers Grove High School where she graduated as Valedictorian. She received her BA at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, graduating cum laude in 1956. Caroline then attended the University of Iowa on scholarship where she received her MFA in painting and met her husband, Jack LeRoy Orman, also a student there. She married Jack on August 22, 1959 at her family farm. Caroline taught at Avery Coonley School for a couple years before giving birth to the first of two sons. The couple then briefly moved to Ft. Collins, Colorado before settling permanently in Loveland to raise their young family.
Caroline taught piano for much of her life using the Suzuki method as the central pillar of her approach to training young pianists. She had great devotion, pride and affection for the numerous students and their families who studied with her. In 1996 Caroline was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, facing the disease with the same determined resilience she witnessed in her parents’ struggle with hardship and bad luck during the Great Depression. She never let the disease define her, instead seeking every bit of information she could find in fighting and slowing its destructive symptoms. This pursuit included the addition of dance, Tai Chi, poetry, and a rediscovery of drawing and painting to her busy schedule. She underwent deep brain stimulation surgery in 2013 which also helped immensely.
The quality and scope of the drawings, watercolors and poetry produced in her later years belied the fact it only occurred in about a 20 year span that was jump started in 1999 by a trip to Italy with her husband Jack, who was teaching a printmaking course abroad there. She adored capturing the figure or landscape on paper, always from life.
She published a collection of poetry and art, “Slow Dance of Autumn” at the age of 80. To quote one of her poet colleagues, “Her well-crafted poems were legendary in Loveland and well beyond”.
One of her poems, “It Is Not As Easy As You Think To Be A Poet,” nicely sums up her thought,
"I’m excessively known for my nonadvertent plagiarism:
snatches and patches of phrases and stanzas
that linger in an unsequetorial sort of way
inside or behind the poem
I thought I was thinking about
Caroline was preceded in death by her husband Jack, and brothers Carleton Nadelhoffer II (Joanne) and Herbert Nadelhoffer (Mary Lou Wehrli). She is survived by sons Daniel Orman (Lisa) and Evan Orman (Michelle) and grandchildren Emily Orman and Jack Orman and step-grandson Rainer Eudeikis (Joyce). She is also survived by sisters-in-law Joanne Nadelhoffer and Mary Lou Wehrli, both of Naperville, IL and nieces Laura Nadelhoffer, Sarah Nadelhoffer and Ellen Nadelhoffer and nephew Carleton Nadelhoffer III.
At this time, a celebration of life is not able to be planned but will be as soon as it is safe to travel and gather. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Parkinson's Foundation at https://www.parkinson.org/ or an animal rescue of your choice. The family welcomes your memories, pictures or other loving thoughts.
Written by Daniel Orman 2020