COLORADO SPRINGS — A Colorado Springs woman is keeping her father's legacy alive by continuing his well-known honey business.
Jim Howe, a disabled Air Force veteran and father of two, lost his battle with pneumonia and COVID-19 a couple of months ago. Before his death, he would sell his "Redneck Honey" on the side of the road throughout Rocky Ford and Fountain.
"My father started Redneck Honey as a hobby, he loved to do things with other people. He really loved talking to people, he would just sit on the side of the road, sell honey and talk their ears off. It was a hobby of is as a disabled veteran," said Candace Kolberg.
Kolberg says his business was his entire world, and he loved being known around the community as the "Honey Man" and "Santa Claus."
"He was community Santa for a very very long time. He had two hobbies, one being Santa Claus and then everyone called him the "Honey Man." I can't even tell you if everyone knew his first name. He was just the "Honey Man", he was the guy that sold honey on Fontane," said Kolberg.
When she heard he was in the hospital for pneumonia and COVID-19, it was a complete shock. Shock that turned to worry as his condition quickly worsened.
"It was a downhill battle from there. He got worse and worse, and I think he was in there for two days before he coded and they brought him back with CPR. After that, he had several massive strokes on both sides of his brain overnight then at that point he was on a ventilator," said Kolberg. "Honestly that was the end for him, me my brother knew it was the end. We knew in our hearts he was gone."
After those massive strokes, they made the difficult decision to take him off of life support.
"We had a meeting with the doctor and they said at this point there's no way he can live without the ventilator, there's no way he's going to have the life he did before, he would be in a nursing home the rest of his life. That's something he didn't want," said Kolberg.
After he was gone, she says a lot of people reached out wishing to continue Redneck Honey. But it was only right, she be the one to do so.
"I had so many people tell me, let me know and I'll help you in any way possible. It just got me thinking, I have a part-time job, I need some extra income anyway. This is perfect for me and I know he would be proud of it, this was his baby and he would be proud that someone was continuing it for him," said Kolberg.
But she's putting her own twist on the business.
"He was Redneck Honey, but since I'm not so Redneck, mine is a little less. A friend of mine told me she loved the idea because it's not only me, his daughter doing it, but a little less of him," said Kolberg.
Since she is a single mother of two, Kolberg says she won't be on the road as much as her father. Those interested in Redneck Honey, can visit their Facebook page or email them at email@example.com.