Obituaries detail

Carole Jo McLeod Buschmann

December 10, 1944 - September 23, 2021


             Carole Jo McLeod Buschmann, an artist and art educator and a long-time resident of Denver, died on September 23 in her home in Kansas City, Missouri with her family at her side.


            Carole was born Carole Jo McLeod in Madison, Wisconsin on December 10, 1944, the first of three daughters of Harry Fenton McLeod and Josephine Barker McLeod, both of whom were career educators.   After graduating from high school in Salina, Kansas Carole attended the University of Kansas at Lawrence, receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts in printmaking.  She went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Education, also from the University of Kansas, and later a Master of Arts in Museum Education from George Washington University.


While exhibiting her work at an Art in the Park summer event in Salina, Carole met Lt. John R. “Jack” Buschmann, an officer stationed at Schilling Air Force Base.  They were married on August 13, 1966, in Salina.  For much of the next fifteen years Carole and Jack lived wherever he was stationed -- on Cape Cod, in Okinawa, in Virginia, in Washington, DC, and in Colorado.


By the age of four, Carole knew she was an artist.  Even as a child she was drawn to color and light and sought to replicate and enhance them.  As a mature artist, she particularly loved color and travel.  She spent many summers traveling in Italy and southwest France with fellow artists, soaking up the light and culture. In recent years she and Jack spent part of each spring in Guatemala, working as volunteers and improving their understanding of the Spanish language and Latin American culture.  Many of her paintings arose from these journeys.


            Carole has written, “Pastels are the tools that I use to interpret the emotions which every day scenes bring to me.  While traveling with fellow artists and family, I have made colorful observations sitting and painting in the corner of small town cafes, busy markets, the shade of Roman aqueducts, quiet gardens.  I am always influenced by the vastness of the beauty of the west and I carry that with me wherever I go.”


          Another artist wrote, “It was a privilege to watch her work, whether it was in the rose garden on Bemis Street, at the Littleton Historical Museum, or at an idyllic little church called St. Phillip in the Field in Sedalia.”


           Carole’s pastels have been exhibited and collected in the US and Europe. Her work focusing on her European experiences has been shown in a variety of galleries. Most recently her work has been in invitational and juried exhibits. Her pastels have received multiple awards and honors.  Carole was particularly proud to have been designated a “Signature Member” of the Pastel Society of Colorado.


            As a teacher, Carole enabled young people to recognize that they too could be artists, creating work that mattered.  She taught art at the Stanley British Primary School in Denver and, for eighteen years, at Colorado Academy.  She was dedicated to the possibility of art for everyone.  A colleague wrote, “She was that rare combination of practicing artist plus experienced and knowledgeable teacher who understood children and their development.” 


             In 2000, Carole received the Yoeman Fisher Award for Teaching Excellence from Colorado Academy.  She was also awarded the McHugh Family enrichment grant and was named a Master Teacher.


            Carole’s love of her family, and their love for her, was a constant in her life.  Her daughter Johanna said of her that she “taught us to create and capture beauty with art and expression but also how to live with beauty always, in our everyday mundane activities.  She saw beauty everywhere.  Now I find myself waking my kids to run outside and enjoy a sunrise, just for the beauty of it.  She gave us that gift.”


            Carole is survived by her husband, “Jack” Buschmann; by her sister, Kathleen Brown (Gary); by her daughters, Kathryn B. Fath (Peter) of Hatboro, PA, and Johanna Y. Gee (Ryan) of Kansas City, MO; by grandchildren Wyatt, Juniper, Josephine, and John Peter; by her sister-in-law, Mary Buschmann O’Neill (John) and brother-in-law Joseph Mercier.  She was preceded in death by her parents and her sister Krista Mercier.


            Donations in Carole’s memory may be made to the Pastel Society of Colorado Education Fund, PO Box 9361, Denver, CO 80209; or to the ALS Association Mid-America Chapter, 6405 Metcalf Ave, Suite 205. Overland Park, KS 66202.  For the ALS association, this link may be used:


Dave & Valerie Rye Oct 02 ,2021

Friend ,Powder Springs ,Georgia

Jack and Family, We are deeply saddened to hear of the loss of your beloved Carole and did not know of her battle with ALS. We hope and pray that her peace now and all the many years of wonderful memories give you all healing and peace in time. Your old friends and business partner, Dave & Valerie Rye

Deborah Barker Oct 02 ,2021

Cousin ,OXFORD ,Mississippi

I am so sorry for your loss. When I think of Carole Jo, I think of her smiling. She was always so full of warmth and light and fun. Although I have not seen in her in many years, we were Facebook friends and I so enjoyed learning about all the amazing things she was doing and I especially loved that she shared her beautiful art work. I know she will be missed tremendously.

Phil Groshong Oct 02 ,2021

Friend ,Eugene ,Oregon

A great friend and talent who we all will miss greatly . Her volunteerism as chief cook with Cascade Medical team for ten years was vital to the team’s success. Margie and I spent many memorable times with Carole and Jack including our weeklong self directed canal trip through the midlands of England. Carole’s love of family and artistic talent will never be forgotten. One of her pastels proudly hangs in our home. Her time here was well spent but too short.

Ricki Feist Oct 03 ,2021

Colorado Academy teacher ,Centennial ,Colorado

So sorry to hear of Carole's passing. She was the consummate art teacher who inspired so many children to see the world through the eyes of an artist and to explore their innate talents. I loved seeing her work in pastels and attended her exhibit at Curtis Art Center. She will remain in the hearts of her fellow teachers and her students.

Tom Fitzgerald Oct 05 ,2021

colleague ,Aurora ,Colorado

Carol was such a beloved member of the Lower School at C.A> for so many years. Her gentle touch and encouraging voice was a blessing to kids and to all of her colleagues at C.A. Her smile was infectious. How lucky all of of were to have her as a colleague and a friend. She raised the bar for good teaching year after year. I feel blessed to have call her my frien. with love to all her family, Tom Fitzgerald