Cover photo for Deborah Thompson Woods's Obituary
Deborah Thompson Woods Profile Photo
1948 Deborah 2024

Deborah Thompson Woods

August 14, 1948 — March 4, 2024


Deborah Thompson Woods (née James), 75, died peacefully in her home in Denver, CO, surrounded by family on March 4, 2024.

Debbie was born on August 14, 1948 in Columbia, PA to Helen Longenecker James and the Rev. Canon Charles P. James. The priesthood called the James family to Miami, FL in the 1950s, where they lived for several years, instilling a love of sunshine at an early age for Debbie.

As a family of five, they later moved to Battle Creek, MI, where Debbie completed high school at Battle Creek Central High School. Little did she know, her future husband, Charles P. Woods, was there in that small Michigan town long before a romance developed. The Florida sun called her back, and she returned to attend the University of Miami where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy with a minor in Spanish. During her college years, she was a devoted and loyal member of Kappa Kappa Gamma.

As fate would have it, during the summer prior to their senior year of college, she and Charles (“Chuck” or “Bokie” as he was lovingly known by family) reconnected in Battle Creek and fell in love. They were engaged shortly thereafter, and as new collegiate graduates, they were married on June 20, 1970. They began their married life together while Charles served in the U.S. Military, which allowed them to live in Germany as newlyweds. Many fond memories were made during that special time, as they skied, traveled, and explored Europe. Their 53 years of marriage was a true testament to their devotion and dedication to one another, and was the unbreakable foundation upon which their family was created.

Shortly after moving back to the states, they welcomed their first daughter, Emily, outside of Chicago, IL in 1975. They then moved west, and began the next chapter of their lives in Colorado, where they would reside for many decades and firmly establish their roots as a family. In 1978, their second daughter, Sarah, was born, followed by their third daughter, Catherine, in 1984. Debbie was endlessly supportive and always proud of her “three girls”. Debbie truly lived a life of service and was a committed and loving wife and mother, always putting the needs of her family before her own. She was a very active parent and volunteer at St. Anne’s Episcopal School for many years. She served on the Board of Trustees, was the President of the Parent Association, and was also part of the Capital Campaign and Operating Development Committees. Debbie was equally invested in her church community at Christ Episcopal Church, where she lived out her Christian faith daily. She participated in Christ Church Vestry, Search Committee, Floral Committee, Altar Guild, and Women of Christ Church. She was also active in Episcopal Church Women, Daughters of the King, and United Thank Offering. On a larger scale, she sat on the Episcopal Bishop Search Committee, was a lay member of the Bishop Standing Committee, was a delegate to the Diocesan Convention, and was elected as a Colorado delegate to the Triennial Convention of the Episcopal Church. She also remained very active as an Kappa Kappa Gamma alumna for many years and served on the KKG Book & Author Dinner Committee.

She was an avid reader and participated in her couples’ Book Club for many years, enjoying historical and non-fiction reads. She loved to learn and travel both nationally and internationally, soaking up any knowledge wherever she went. Debbie always made sure to stop at any museum or interesting landmark along the way. When she wasn’t traveling or volunteering, she was meticulously and tirelessly maintaining an immaculate household. She was also a faithful and devoted owner to her beloved dogs, diligently taking them on daily walks. She enjoyed many winters in the desert sun at their second home in La Quinta, CA and long weekends at their quaint little cabin on the South Platte River. She had a passion for exploring residential real estate and open houses, shopping for a great deal, dancing, trivia, linguistics, and all things Elvis, Yacht Rock, and Motown.

Debbie was so loved by all who knew her. She was kind, loving, selfless, faithful, and deeply dedicated to her family and community. She will be greatly missed. 

She is survived by her adoring husband, Charles P. Woods; three daughters: Emily Bovard (Ron) of Denver, CO, Sarah Bucholt (Dan) of Ft. Collins, CO, and Catherine Pokorny (Luke), of Butte, MT; seven grandchildren: Claire, Scotty, and Annie Bovard, Zach and Nate Bucholt, and Ada and Ella Pokorny; brother Michael James (Christi), numerous brothers in law and sisters in law, nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by parents, the Rev. Canon Charles P. James, Helen Longenecker James; brother Charles P. James II; father in law, Charles S. Woods; and mother-in-law, Mary P. Woods.

Cremation has taken place. Service will be on Saturday, April 6 at 10:00 AM at Christ Episcopal Church, with reception immediately following. (2950 S. University Blvd. Denver, CO 80210).

In lieu of flowers, please send donations and contributions to Christ Episcopal Church in Memory of Deborah Woods (2950 S. University Blvd. Denver, CO 80210) or St. Anne’s Episcopal School in Memory of Deborah Woods (2701 S. York St., Denver, CO 80210).

Please share memories of Debbie and condolences with her family by signing the online guestbook below. 

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, April 6, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Mountain (no DST) time)

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