January 6, 1927 – November 22, 2011
Alan’s time on earth, January 6, 1927 to November 22, 2011 ended in the family home surrounded by his family including his beloved dogs Phoenix and Molly.
Alan’s time was full of opportunity and discovery and he utilized these by leading a very full life of academic and professional achievement, generosity, kindness and adventure. The picture is just a vignette of his complex, multi-faceted life; the release of CWRS facility Hawks and white-tailed deer back to the wild.
He will be missed by his loving wife of 60 years, Frances Rudkin, his children, Gail Johnson of Calgary, Dr. David Rudkin of Calgary, Jane Rudkin of Calgary and Dr. Bruce (Annelieke) Rudkin of Rocky Mountain House. He was also fortunate to have had six loving grandchildren. Andrea, Natalie, Scott, Diana, Tessa and Dryden
Everything Alan achieved in his life was based on his own initiative, personal strength and purpose – he grew up with no opportunities harassed by an evil stepfather, but was able to overcome these early life challenges. He was very kind and generous to his own family and vowed to give them all the support and opportunities he didn’t have – to explore all that life has to offer – education, travel, sports, recreational properties etc.
After High School in Edmonton, Alan joined the army and volunteered for an American led military mission to the South Pacific. Fortunately WWII ended before his disembarkation. He returned to Edmonton and got a BSC in Geology from the University of Alberta then a year of graduate work at the University of Washington. Alan began work in the Exploration Research Department of Imperial Oil in 1950 then married Frances (a nurse) in 1951.
His Career began with one of his life’s biggest adventures, the geological reconnaissance and mapping of the Arctic Archipelago. In 1959, Imperial Oil, along with three other companies were the first ones to receive the newly developed Canadian Government permits for oil exploration in the Canadian Arctic. Alan made preparations for the exploration party to spend the 1960 summer season camping while covering over 600 miles of the major geological provinces. Prior to their arrival on the island, very few people other than Inuits had camped out for the entire summer of the archipelago.
While exploring Devon Island, Alan’s expedition group found several rock cairns constructed by British explorer Sir Edward Belcher’s ship’s crew more than a century before. The metal containers found in the cairns held letters and maps written by Sir Belcher regarding their ongoing search for the missing Franklin Expedition.
In the mid 1950’s he taught Petroleum Geology at SAIT, wrote the “Lower Cretaceous of Western Canada” for the ASPG Atlas for which he won the Link award in 1961. He went out on his own in 1968 as R.A. Rudkin Consultants Ltd. Alan then became the President and Vice-President of a group of companies within Canada and the United States, including Petromark Minerals Ltd and Bluesky Oil and Gas Ltd.
Alan retired at 51 years and spent the remainder of his life spending time adventure travelling with family and friends, constantly giving his children advice (unfortunately he was often right) as well as on many adventures with Frances who was just as adventurous as he was. Alan contributed to wildlife causes including the Canadian Wilds at the Calgary Zoo where he was also Trustee for many years, and enjoyed meeting and working with the fascinating people who are a part of the wildlife education and conservation thing worldwide.
Alan also really enjoyed hiking and cross country skiing with the annuitant group and golfing at the Earl Grey. Our family will be having a reception to celebrate his life and hope that many of his friends will be able to come. We do not have a date for the reception but will run the obituary again when this is determined. According to his wishes, his cremated remains will be scattered in a special place and anyone who is in Fish Creek Park on the Bow River path near the Ranche Restaurant may want to take a break on Alan and Frances’s bench. Condolences may be forwarded through www.mcinnisandholloway.com.
In living memory of Al Rudkin, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES Park Memorial Chapel, 5008 ELBOW DRIVE S.W. Telephone: (403)243-8200.Print This Obituary & Condolences