Grady Jackson (Jack) Gravlee, Sr., age 89, was born May 31, 1930, in Birmingham, Ala., to Grady Gaines and Olathe “Patsy” Gravlee. Jack married Rhonda Louise Gygax in 1953. They loved and supported each other through 57 years of marriage.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, a sister and one son, Grady Jackson Gravlee, Jr. Survivors include step-daughter Rita Gygax of Missouri, and step-sons Thomas Gygax and Monty Nash of Arizona, as well as Steve Baysinger of Texas, the close friend of his late son.
After high school, Jack went into the Air Force for four years during the Korean War. After discharge, he entered Samford University (Birmingham, AL), where he received an undergraduate degree. His M.A. and PhD degrees were completed at Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge, LA).
Jack taught communications at the University of Houston as well as at the University of New Mexico and Auburn University. Jack spent the final 39 years of his career at Colorado State University where he was chair of the Communications Department for fifteen years. Jack traveled extensively for international academic research, consulted in British political campaigns and authored multiple publications in his field. He was honored with a named endowed scholarship at Colorado State University. Jack and his wife were generous and gracious hosts to many national and international debate teams and he received numerous national and international awards during his career.
Jack passed away at Good Samaritan Assisted Living Center in Estes Park, on Friday, Dec. 27. He will be sincerely missed by his many friends, kind caregivers and loyal companions.
Graveside services will be at Grandview Cemetery, Fort Collins, at 3 p.m. on January 10. There will also be a memorial requiem mass at 2:30 p.m. on January 17 at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church, Estes Park. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church or to the Gravlee Endowed Scholarship at Colorado State University or a charity of your choice.