For four years, as she and her friend walked to high school, Juliana's life plan gradually unfolded. Her plans and aspirations would take her far from home on a journey of a lifetime. She always had a deep desire to travel and to explore to do the extraordinary. Her parents, Robert and Delia Kickert, took a grand trip through Europe in the mid-1950s. This, no doubt, planted a seed within Juliana, which grew and grew as her life unfolded.
Having earned a B.S. in Education from the University of Florida and a M.S. in Education from Indiana University, she held various positions in the education field. However, the business woman emerged when she received her MBA. Her father was a prominent businessman owning a very successful auto dealership. Juliana in essence grew up and was nurtured in a business world. In the mid-1970s, she entered the real estate world on the north side of Chicago. This being a highly competitive field for women, she was able to get the challenge she was looking for. She did extremely well over the next ten years climbing the real estate ladder of success.
Ultimately, she was able to realize a lifelong dream of owning property in the West, which had to include horses, dogs and cats. She settled in Sedona, Ariz., where she designed a sanctuary for her horse and wolf. Her beloved "Pasha" (wolf) came into her care during this time. As an active member of the Sedona Saddle Club (president for one year), she became politically active to preserve this horse friendly community. She was quite the equestrian and took every opportunity to ride throughout her travels.
When Sedona began to change and grow, her animals needed a more remote and safer environment. She was brought to Telluride because of her love and affection for her wolf, Pasha. She realized he needed an environment that was more natural and wild for him. She again designed and had built her piece of paradise 9,000 feet up in the San Juan Mountains. She and her animals thrived amidst the beauty and tranquility. From the wildflowers that bloomed in the spring and summer to the bursts of colors in the fall and majestic snow-capped mountains; she and her animals were always at peace.
She traveled the world over, not as a tourist, but as a world citizen total immersion in the culture and in the history prior to each trip. With every undertaking she was a perfectionist to detail. Juliana could speak many languages including German, Spanish, Italian and French. She believed in the power of herbs and felt very strongly that people cross paths for a reason. She was very supportive of charitable organizations and was involved both monetarily and as a volunteer with the Jane Goodall Institute, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, World Wildlife Fund, and International Fund for Animal Welfare, Wildlife Land Trust, and the Humane Society of America.
Juliana was passionate about life, preserving the habitat and care of animals, the relationships she made all over the world and making a difference with everything and everyone she came into contact with. Even after being diagnosed with leukemia in her mid-50s, she took every opportunity to overcome the adversities and still kept her course with the causes she so loved. She will be deeply missed. A memorial celebration is scheduled for Saturday, June 24, at 10 a.m. at Juliana's home in Placerville.
Funeral arrangements were handled by Crippin Funeral Home in Montrose, 249-2121.
Compiled by her friends.