Richard Wayne “Dick” Chuman, age 93, passed away at his home in Westminster, Colorado on September 26th, 2023. Born in Omaha, Nebraska on July 25th, 1930, Dick was the second child to Alvin and Lucy Chuman.
He attended the University of Nebraska in Lincoln and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in geology in 1953. He was the recipient of the prestigious Sinclair Oil Fellowship in Geology in 1953, and went on to earn his Masters of Science degree in geology in 1954. After college he started his professional career with Sinclair Oil in Billings, Montana, where he met and married his first wife, Dorothy Golay. Soon after, they moved to Casper, Wyoming. They later divorced. During his time in Casper, he was an active member of Masonic Lodge #15. He held several offices within the Lodge and ultimately became Worshipful Grand Master.
The inherent booms and busts of the oil business resulted in him venturing out on his own in 1961 in Casper, Wyoming as an independent petroleum geologist, where he relished being his own boss and the freedoms it allowed. His passion for his work carried on well into his eighties, where he and his long-time oilfield buddies were always working on the next “deal”! One of these buddies, his great friend of some sixty-plus years - Fred Johnson, communicated with each other twice-a-day, every day, enjoying a “whiskey or two” together – albeit over the phone.
An avid outdoorsman, he loved the “outside” and all that hunting and fishing had to offer. Always a capable handyman, he refined his carpentry skills later in life – going on to design and build elaborate banisters and railings for family and friends alike. As anyone entering his garage can attest, his pension for meticulously labeling EVERYTHING gave witness to the adage “a place for everything and everything in its place”.
He married Phyllis McConnollogue on November 11th, 1978, and they enjoyed a great and happy life together until her passing on February 8th, 2017. Always open to family visiting, he welcomed his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren at every opportunity, especially if they brought their dogs with them – “The more dogs the better!”, he would say. And as a devoted dog lover, some of his fondest memories over the years were of his various four-legged companions.
He is survived by his daughter Rucey (Craig Erwin) Myers of Seattle, Washington and son Cole (Christi Bekke) Chuman of Casper, Wyoming. Grandchildren Madeline (Jon) Christensen, Emily (Kristian) Bisiar, Kyle (Jess) Chuman, Vivian Bekke, Tanner Bekke and great grandchildren Kayson, Murphie and Konner, and many other loving friends and neighbors.
He was preceded in death by parents Alvin and Lucy Chuman, brother Ted Chuman, and beloved wife Phyllis.
A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, December 2nd at 2 PM at Horan & McConaty. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Salvation Army.