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Richard “Dick” Gibbs

Richard “Dick” Gibbs, 81, of Livingston, Montana, died peacefully surrounded by his family on November 24, 2023. He is survived by his wife Sandy; sister Laurie; daughters Bonnie (Parke) Goodman, Nancy (Don) Wente, and Sara Gibbs; grandchildren Julia and Mitchell Wente, and Evynn Stagg; and great-granddaughter Lara Stagg.


Dick grew up in Midland, Michigan and attended the Universities of Notre Dame and Michigan State. He married Sandy Wells of Ludington, Michigan in 1963. He earned his Ph.D. in Mathematics from MSU in 1970.


Dick loved teaching at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado from 1971 to 1998. He was in the Durango Rotary Club from 1975 to 2013, and served as president in 1983. He enjoyed writing the Durango Herald’s “Puzzle Corner” from 1982 to 2006.


After retiring, Dick worked with the US International Mathematical Olympiad team, helped to write and grade AP Calculus exams, and taught at math camps around the world. In 1996, he co-founded The Colorado Math Awards with Dr. David Carlson to recognize outstanding young students. From 1993 to 2002 he edited math problems for The School Science and Mathematics Association with friend and Fort Lewis colleague Laszlo Szuecs.


In 2013, Dick and Sandy moved to Livingston to spend more time with their family. Dick spent lots of time at Mordam Art on Main Street in Livingston, visiting with tourists (while wearing his famous hat from Thailand), and helping customers while Bonnie made “big beads”.


Dick’s other passions included travel, jazz festivals, poker parties, college football, and sharing a good joke! He loved late night comedy and recorded the early seasons of SNL with a handheld tape recorder to replay while driving his kids to school.


When asked how we should celebrate his life, Dick smiled and joked: “Fireworks.” We will plant a tree on the Fourth of July 2024 in Livingston, to remember his busy and fun-filled life.


To offer a condolence or share a memory of Richard “Dick” Gibbs visit The Durango Herald website, below:

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