Carey Downs Gibson, 85, passed away peacefully on Sunday January 28th, 2024 in her residence in Denver Colorado.
Carey was born in Kerhonkson, NY on December 28th, 1938 to Donald and Guenn Downs, as the eldest of four siblings, including sister Shirley and brothers Chris and Greg Downs. She attended Oakwood Friends School and Mount Holyoke College. Carey married Douglas Jack, of West Springfield, MA, and raised two children Juliette Jack and MacAndrew Jack in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. She was an avid skier and opened and operated two ski shops in Massachusetts. She also worked in media and public relations, including working for local NBC affiliate WWLP in Springfield, MA, and as Director of Public relations for Western New England College.
Carey married Terry Gibson in 1987 and moved to Denver Colorado where she served as assistant to Dan Ritchie, Chancellor of the University of Denver. Following Denver, Carey moved with her husband to Tulsa, Oklahoma, where she was active in the arts, serving as a docent for the Gilcrease and Philbrook Museums, on the board of the Tulsa Ballet, and as columnist for the Tulsa World newspaper. Carey and Terry moved to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where Carey continued her work with the arts. She was instrumental in the revival of the Cedar Rapids Symphony as a board member. In Cedar Rapids, Carey was immersed in and developed a love of Czech culture. She served as the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Czech and Slovak Museum and Library, overseeing the rebuilding and significant expansion of the museum following the Iowa flood of 2008. Carey also cared deeply about women’s issues and empowerment and was active in the alumni association of Mount Holyoke and involved in the political campaigns of several female political candidates in Massachusetts, Oklahoma, and Iowa, including her own run for state congress.
Carey was a warm, extroverted, social woman, known for her sense of humor and joie de vivre. She loved laughter, art, and gardening and could be counted on to bring a spark of joy and mirth to her social interactions. She loved cooking and hosting gatherings and parties, and her home with Terry was often the setting for family events, fundraisers, and celebrations. They shared a townhouse in Keystone, Colorado where they enjoyed skiing, biking, hiking, and hosting their grandchildren. Carey and Terry explored many locales by bicycle, including the rails to trails network of Cape Cod and Nantucket, riding from Vail to Keystone, multiple completions of Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI) and bike-based tours of Italy, France, Viet Nam, and Spain.
She is survived by her husband Terry Gibson, her children Juliette and MacAndrew, her grandchildren Keegan Jack, Orion Banerjee, and Tanner Jack, and her siblings Shirley Downs, Chris Downs, and Greg Downs.