Thomas ‘Monte’ Hughes |

Thomas ‘Monte’ Hughes

Thomas "Monte" Hughes died Jan. 28. A celebration of his life is planned Feb. 4.

Thomas “Monte” Hughes, a well-loved character best known as “Monte of Italy,” died Saturday, Jan. 28. He was 67 years old.

Monte filled his 67 years with passion and adventure. After high school, he served in the Army in Germany, where his love for cycling was born. He returned to the U.S. and helped design and build the ski runs at Mammoth, Calif.Monte arrived in Aspen 38 years ago. He owned the St. Moritz with his wife, Loretta, and later opened a bike shop below the old Paragon.

His greatest love was fishing, and he traveled the world catching the big ones. If you were looking for a special rod, reel, lure, fly, boot, pole, ski or any other specialty sporting item, Monte would find it for you. He was a longtime member of the Eagles Club. Monte was a giving soul who would give you the shirt off his back – or find you one that fit. He was a man who was content with the simple things in life: good friends, good food, a good laugh and a good cup of coffee at the ‘Stube.

Monte is survived by his son, Louis Hughes, his sister, Mary Sue Thomas and her husband, George Thomas, and a far-reaching community of friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Lavan and Jenette Hughes.A celebration of his life will take place at 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4, at the Eagles Club, 700 E. Bleeker St., 925-9912. Attendees should wear something they received from Monte.

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