Carl Oren "Ladd" Hiatt died peacefully in his home Tuesday, December 3, 2013. He was 90 years old. Carl was born September 14, 1923, on the family ranch in the Black Forest north of Colorado Springs in El Paso County, Colorado, to Elbert R. and Merle R. (Rhudy) Hiatt. He was the 10th of 11 children and attended school in Eastonville. |
Carl was a World War II veteran, enlisting in the U.S. Navy in July 1943. He attended basic training at Farragut Naval Training Center in Idaho and served as a Pharmacist's Mate (Corpsman) with the 2nd Battalion, 28th Regiment, 5th Marine Division during the invasion of Iwo Jima. He and his company helped guard the Stars and Stripes on top of Mount Suribachi the first night after it was so famously raised, before rejoining the rest of their Division in the battle to take the rest of the island. Carl was wounded days later while trying to reach an injured Marine, for which he received the Purple Heart, and was evacuated stateside. After eight months of treatment at various service hospitals, he was discharged in November 1945. Like so many of his generation, he rarely spoke of his war experiences.
Following the war Carl returned to the Pikes Peak region, attended Blair Business College on the GI Bill and trained to be an accountant, taking a job at Fort Carson before settling in with the U.S. Post Office for more than 30 years. He met his future wife, Dorothy Mae "Dotty" Flores, while she was working at McCrae Motors. He remembered her as "a career woman with style and beautiful eyes and hair." They were married in Pueblo on December 20, 1949 by a Justice of the Peace. They made their home in Colorado Springs, where they raised three children and were never without a Boston Terrier.
Carl and Dorothy loved camping, rock hunting, and fishing in the Colorado mountains. Carl also enjoyed studying history, particularly Colorado history, and family camping trips usually included stops at old ghost towns or mining camps. He researched much of his own family history in an era when such effort required many hours of correspondence and time in the library going through microfiche and actual documents. Ladd and Dotty enjoyed playing cards, particularly pinochle with their friends of more than 40 years, Evelyn and Bob Edgar. Carl was a Denver Broncos fan long before they were ever any good, in the days of the vertically striped socks.
Carl is survived by sister Evelyn Jones, brother Stanton Hiatt and his wife Billie Jo; son Ladd E. Hiatt, daughter Cheryl L. Haver and her husband Steve, son Gregory S. Hiatt and his wife Kathleen; granddaughters Emily M. (Ross) Plageman and her husband Brendan, and Elizabeth L. Haver; grandsons Matthew R. Ross and his wife Anne, Geoffrey R. Hiatt and his wife Elizabeth, and Galen G. Hiatt; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife Dorothy Mae "Dotty" Flores, his parents, 5 sisters and 3 brothers.
Burial will take place at Evergreen Cemetery on Thursday, December 12 following a memorial service at Cappadona's Funeral Home, 1020 E. Fillmore St. in Colorado Springs at 11am.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Carl's name may be made to the Trust for the National Mall (https://nationalmall.org/) for care of the World War II Memorial.
Published in The Gazette on Dec. 10, 2013