C.J. Gudim died July 9, 2017 in Grand Junction, Colorado, at the age of ninety-two. He was a petroleum geologist retired from a career of fifty years, a veteran of World War II, an artist, a husband, for sixty-six years, and a father of four. His family is grateful for his life, for his love, and for his courage.
Mr. Gudim was born August 2, 1924 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the son of Arthur and Isabelle Gudim. He grew up on his father's resort on the Chippewa Flowage in Wisconsin near Hayward, but went to high school in Minneapolis. During World War II he served in the Navy as a carrier pilot. Following the war he studied geology at the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1951 with a Bachelors degree. In the summers while a student, he made first a trip with three friends by canoe from International Falls to Hudson's Bay, and then, in subsequent summers, he worked with a U.S. Geological Survey team doing fieldwork in the Brooks Range of northern Alaska. C.J. met his wife at the University of Minnesota, Thelma Gudim, who was getting her R.N. at Swedish Hospital in Minneapolis. After his second summer in Alaska, they were married in the fall of 1950. C.J. found a job in Casper, Wyoming, where he and Thelma moved in the summer of 1951. Three of their four children were born in Casper, and the fourth in Denver, Colorado. They remained in Casper until 1958 when C.J. was transferred to Denver. The family went with him to Alaska where he was working for the summer, before moving to Denver. C.J. worked in the Denver area until his retirement in 1998, with only a few years spent living elsewhere.
In the first fifteen years of his career he worked as a petroleum geologist exploring the United States. After 1971 his work was international in scope. In the period in between he worked as an artist and operated an art gallery in Jackson, Wyoming. This was followed by work, with a group in Princeton, New Jersey, that was collecting geologic data worldwide. C.J. continued to exercise his skills as an artist, as time allowed, in the following years. When he retired he was able again to paint on a daily basis.
He was retired for nineteen years, living briefly in Cottonwood, Arizona, and then in Durango Colorado, before moving to Fruita, Colorado, in 2004. He enjoyed being in the mountains, exploring the desert, socializing with the neighbors, attending with Thelma the Durango-Farmington Geological Association meetings, and participating in art related projects. Health problems changed what he was able to do in his later years. He remained at home until the last two months of his life. His family is grateful for all the time they spent with him, grateful for the time in his later years, and grateful too, for the people that came into his life to take care of him in his last few months. He is survived by his wife and four children.