In Memoriam: Sean Usle

Sean Usle, a beloved Coniston alum who was a camper and counselor in the 70s/80s has sadly passed away.

His fellow Coniston friends shared some of their favorite memories of Sean from his time at Coniston on the 70s/80s era Facebook page.

In Memoriam: David Barden

(1935 - 2023)

David Barden, a beloved Coniston community member has passed away. For many summer he was a program director at Coniston, and is most remembered for his campfire ghost stories.

David was a dedicated teacher and finished his educational career as a guidance counselor. In retirement, David spent time counseling and volunteering at Pope John High School, Camp Mason and youth mentoring with Big Brothers.

In Memoriam: Jesse Barden

(1977 - 2024)

Jesse Barden, passed away peacefully in the comfort of his home in March. Jesse was a camper at Coniston and went on to be a 94′ CIT and counselor. Since that time, he and his Coniston friends continued to get together for yearly reunions.

Jesse worked for his family business, Barden’s Concrete, and was an integral part of its success over the years.

In Memoriam: Aaron Turner

(1969 - 2023)

It is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to Aaron Turner, from 2001 to 2022, he was Camp’s Facilities Director.

When the history of Coniston is written Aaron will be a major character. His hands provided much of the energy behind building Coniston’s remarkable facility. For anyone who worked with him they will remember that smiles, fun, and wit were as abundant as the nails and screws on every project. Laughter and work were the basis of our friendship and Aaron is a friend we will sorely miss. Our love and sympathy go out to his two sons, Austin and Bryce who are also members of the Coniston Community.

In Memoriam: Paula Louise Craig

(1960 - 2022)

It is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to Paula Louise Craig. Paula passed away very peacefully on November 14, 2022. 

Paula was a 70s alum and was a wonderful, deeply-loved member of our community. 

On March 27, 1995, Paula married her best friend, Gary Kudrna. They made their home in Ennis, TX and together raised Gary’s sons Ty Kudrna and Chaz Kudrna.  Paula loved being “Mom” and friend to Ty & Chaz and “Bonus Mom” and friend to Gary’s stepdaughter Taneel Pace of Jordan, Utah. She also felt blessed to have a big extended family of beloved nieces, nephews, cousins & in-laws.

Paula worked at every level of the entertainment industry from small, intimate theatrical shows to epic world class multi-media and fireworks extravaganzas like the Power of Houston.  While she loved the unique challenges that came from each production, her very favorite part of her work was meeting new people.  She truly enjoyed the company of new and old friends; and she cherished every friendship made along the way during every chapter of her life from school to Camp Coniston to work.

Our community shared some of their treasured memories with Paula:

“I shared a cabin with Paula MANY years ago. I can still see her beautiful long, dark wavy hair and her practicing her ballet ‘en pointe’. What an incredible life she led. My deepest condolences to her family and friends.”

“I remember her telling a stories about being Snow White at Disney. And also meeting Ace Freely and Gene Simmonds from Kiss. She was one of my favorite all time counselors at Coniston.”

“I have many fond memories of Paula – laughing and singing. Such a great spirit. Peace to her family and friends.”

“One of the dearest, sweetest people from my years at Coniston. Such a wonderful soul. Such a dear friend. RIP, dear Paula.”