Obituary: Harold Clark
December 6, 1941 – October 21, 2020
Hal Clark, beloved Aspen local since 1969, died peacefully at the Colorado Veterans Community Living Center in Rifle, CO on Oct. 21 from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. We would like to extend an enormous word of thanks and gratitude to the amazing staff at CVCLC for all they did for Hal.
Hal was born on the eve of World War II in Birmingham, AL. He grew up in Arlington, VA outside of D.C. where his father worked for the Rural Electrification Administration. Hal always spoke fondly of his grandmother’s influence on his young years and her amazing loving nature. He attended Duke University and was drafted into the Army out of college during the Vietnam War. Hal served at Long Binh Post in Vietnam as a Psychiatric Technician, achieving the rank of Specialist E5. After returning from overseas Hal moved to Denver and worked for a survey company that did work in Aspen, which is what brought him to the valley.
In Aspen Hal worked for the City of Aspen’s Building Department and Elam Construction. He spent much of his time working on various non-profit boards including ACES and Holy Cross Energy. Hal was very interested in environmental causes and helped with efforts for the Friends of Hunter Creek which fought to maintain public access into the popular valley. He was also instrumental in getting the Open Space and Trails program off the ground when he was named the first director of the Parks Association, the predecessor to the Aspen Valley Land Trust. During Hal’s tenure, he oversaw the original construction of the Ajax trail and parts of what would become the Rio Grande trail.
Hal loved his time in the outdoors as an avid fisherman and hiking with his loved German Shepherds. He had a tremendous sense of adventure and traveled extensively around the world his whole life. He went on various river trips from the Grand Canyon to the Bio Bio in Chile. Hal also visited Vietnam later in life with friends to see the country and the changes since he had been there in the 1960’s.
Hal’s talent as a singer landed him a brief stint in a barber shop quartet in Denver. He always enjoyed being part of community theater productions in Aspen and loved to sing in the choir at Christmas, performing in the Messiah every year.
Hal is survived by many friends with a bounty of fond memories to share. He was a very sweet man who was always quick with a clever remark and a wonderful sense of humor. There will be a celebration of his life next summer in Aspen.
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