Obituary: Philip Hodgson
May 14, 1947 – April 18, 2022
Long time Aspen resident, Philip Reed Hodgson, passed away unexpectedly at his home in Aspen, Colo on April 18th, 2022. He was 74 years old.
Born in New York City on May 14th, 1947, Phil grew up in New Canaan, CT and moved to Colorado after enrolling at the University of Denver (DU). Phil met Patricia (Patty) Hayden, who also attended DU, and they married in 1970. After receiving his Master of Fine Arts, Phil and Patty moved to Aspen in 1973 where his family history dates to the early 1890s. Phil’s great grandfather worked the Smuggler mine and his grandfather, who graduated from Aspen High School, served as a member of one of the Aspen Fire Hose Companies while also working as a bellhop at the Hotel Jerome.
Aspen provided a strong community for Phil and Patty to raise their budding family. Phil was active in Aspen’s local art community and exhibited his unique three-dimensional acrylic on canvas works in the local galleries such as the Gargoyle. He also enjoyed and participated in Aspen’s quirkier side such as partaking in the Art Cart Derby down Monarch Street or serving as a member of the “Aspen State Teacher’s College.” Phil enjoyed four-wheeling with Patty, fly fishing on the Roaring Fork, and spending time with his children and grandchildren. You might have caught a glimpse of him on the slopes in his 360 Head skis, leather ski boots, and purple Moriarty hat.
Enthralled with Aspen’s history, Phil continually advocated for its preservation. He brought this interest with him upon his arrival to Aspen and it continued to grow, influenced by his long-time Aspenite neighbors. Phil poured over any Aspen antiques he could get a hold of and was always humbled by the great iron works left behind by the many mining ventures throughout the Aspen area. He was always ready to share the stories of Aspen’s history with others. Whether you passed him on a snowy morning outside his home as he meticulously shoveled not only his walk but also the walkways of his fellow neighbors, or saw him walking his bull terrier down the Rio Grande, it was easy to get him talking about the town’s history.
Phil was kind, generous, and thoughtful with both his human and animal friends. He never passed up the opportunity to stop and visit with a dog and could get almost any dog’s tail wagging in a matter of minutes. Phil cherished the many close friendships he had not only in the valley but from his days at DU and extending back to his childhood as well. A Luddite to the end, Phil stubbornly stuck to his preferred methods of communication (phone or longhand) when reaching out to family and friends. An occasion was never forgotten, whether a birthday, holiday, or just something he saw in the newspaper that he wanted to share.
Phil was preceded in death by his wife, Patty, and his parents Geraldine and Richard. He is survived by his four children, Quinn Young (Kendal), Hayley Pace (Mat), Drew Jeffries (Mark), and Wyley Hodgson (Heather); devoted dog, Beulah; five grandchildren, Ella, Cora, Coen, Holden, and Hayden; siblings, Morgan Hodgson, Brooke Latimer, and Peter Hodgson; close family friend, Barry Gilbert; and countless others. He will join Patty in Aspen Grove Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Aspen Historical Society, the Aspen Animal Shelter (or an animal rescue of your choice), or the Independence Pass Foundation. We hope you can join us for a gathering this summer on Saturday, July 23rd at 1:00pm at the Aspen Historical Society’s Wheeler-Stallard House.
If you have any “Phil” stories and/or pictures, please feel free to email any to email@example.com