Obituary: Barbara Koval |

Obituary: Barbara Koval

Barbara Koval
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Barbara Koval March 19, 1935 – May 26, 2020

Barbara Lee (née Witz) Koval was born to Leo and Barbara Witz in Chicago, where she raised her family, eventually venturing west to live in Aspen, Scottsdale and Boulder. Barbara took great pride in and was devoted to her family. She is survived by her brother Bill (Marlene), sons Mike (Deb), Jamie (Margo) and John (Trish), and grandchildren Jenna, Matt, Connor, Will, Kalee, Annie, Laura and Kate. She was also the beloved aunt of Steve (Sally), Diane (Ray) and David (Jeannie). She was preceded in death by her former husband, Leonard Koval and her companion of 15 years, Michael Solheim.

Barbara graduated from Stephens College and Northwestern University. Later in life, she received her Certificate in the rigorous four-year Great Books Core Curriculum at the University of Chicago Graham School. Barbara was spirited and thoughtful. She traveled to all seven continents and loved the arts, film and classical music. Barbara appreciated music at venues all over the world, but she was particularly fond of concerts at the Aspen Music Festival and School (AMFS) which she attended for over fifty years. She was on Board of Trustees of AMFS for over a decade, and was a National Council member for nearly twenty years.

She was dedicated to the educational mission of the AMFS, and she enjoyed following the career of musicians as they developed from students to accomplished performers. Barbara experienced an active and inquisitive life. She was an avid golfer, accomplished bridge player and among one of four generations of skiers. She loved all sports and honored her Chicago roots as an avid Bears fan which brought her both joy and sorrow.

Barbara remained sharp witted and maintained deep connections with family and friends right up until she passed away. She is profoundly missed by all who knew her. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Aspen Music Festival and School A celebration of Barbara’s life will be held in Aspen this summer to be announced at a later date.