Ginger K. Renner

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PARADISE VALLEY - Early in the morning on March 27, with her children by her side, Ginger K. Renner quietly passed away due to complications from a fall. She was born in Fullerton, La., and moved to Silver City, N.M., at the age of 6. After college and her marriage to George Neveau, the family settled in Riverside, Calif. She later served as Ranch Manager at the expansive Cochran-Odlum Ranch in Coachella Valley, Calif. Her interest and appreciation for art began to focus on western art, eventually enabling her to own two galleries, Desert Southwest Art Gallery in Palm Desert, Calif. and Trailside Gallery in Jackson Hole, Wyo. Ginger was known for her love of art and artists. Her growing affinity for western art in particular, led her to Frederic G. Renner and his interest in Charles M. Russell, "the cowboy artist". Their marriage became a collaborative continuing research, and project of love, into the extensive works of Charles M. Russell. Charlie Russell's work includes oils and watercolors, as well as drawings, bronzes and illustrated letters, all depicting his great passion for Montana and the West. Ginger and Fred shared this passion. Knowing the three of them will now be reunited in their final resting spot in Montana should give us all a reason to smile. Ginger attended New Mexico Teacher's College and the University of California at Riverside. In 1994, she received an honorary doctorate from the University of Montana for her contribution to Western American History. She was a nationally renowned expert on Charlie Russell and an author, lecturer, collector and historian. She devoted many years to the Charles M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, Mont., and the Phoenix Art Museum in Phoenix, Ariz. She was a founding member of the CMR Museum National Advisory Board formed in September 1983. In 1995, she received the 'Josephine Trigg Award', the highest award presented by the CMR Museum. In 2005, she received the "Women in Art - Protecting our Artistic Heritage Award", presented by the Phoenix Art Museum League. Ginger was also one of the major contributors to the Russell Catalogue Raisonne completed in 2007. Ginger's love for her family and strength of character were unsurpassed. She carried herself with a pure confidence and elegance that few could match. She blazed a trail in the hearts and minds of all that were fortunate enough to know her. Her fiery spirit, extraordinary storytelling, and unending passion for life will certainly be missed. She was preceded in death by her parents, Esther and John Amy; late husband, Frederic G. Renner; and three of her five children, Toynette Chancey, Christopher Neveau, and Rebecca Anne Neveau. She is survived by her son, Dan Neveau (Nora); daughter Amanda Stine (Morgan); five grandchildren, Kendra Johnson (Andrew), Ian Stine (Taryn), Danielle Kerr, Christopher Neveau and Matthew Neveau; and four great-grandchildren, Corbin and Cooper Johnson, and MacKenzie and Caden Stine. Ginger, we will all miss you more than words can say, but the indelible memories you have left on each of our lives will most certainly live on in our hearts forever … In searching for the meaning of "3:27", the date and time of your death, we found this quote, "endowed with life, living, alive", … how completely appropriate. In appreciation of Ginger's life, donations may be made to: CMR Museum in Great Falls, Mont. Ginger would have celebrated her 90th birthday on May 21st of this year. A celebration in Arizona, followed by a tribute and interment in Montana will be announced at a later date.

Published in NewsZapAZ on Apr. 23, 2011
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