Look out Heaven, here he comes!
George Doyle Copeland died on November 27, 2022, at home with his love, Judy, by his side as she always was.
George met his match, Judy Martinez-Keogh, and they joined their families when they married on September 18, 2010, in Moab at a surprise outdoor wedding disguised as Judy’s 50th birthday party—the coolest wedding ever! George was always one for surprises and catching people off guard. George and Judy were made for each other; laughing together and giving each other as much crap as they possibly could.
George was born on January 19, 1956, to Margaret (Baldwin) and Doyle Copeland in Kimball, Nebraska. He attended school in Kimball until moving to Greeley, Colorado, in 1968 where he graduated from Greeley Central High School in 1974.
George loved all kinds of sports and participated in everything from football to semi-pro baseball to golf to extreme skiing. He was injured in a junior high school football match, which resulted in a ruptured kidney, so he continued through life with only one. After a life-changing knee injury while helicopter skiing, George took up golf and played almost daily until his health deteriorated. Even then, you would find him riding around in the golf cart with his buddies or serving on the board of directors at the Moab Golf Course. You could say that George had nine lives and he used them all. His first of several heart attacks in September 2001 and lymphoma beginning in 2018 could have taken him out, but he beat them all in true George-fashion.
George met Sharon Gudka while working as a lead actor at the Chuckwagon Dinner Playhouse in Greeley. They were married in Keenesburg, Colorado, on April 3, 1976, and welcomed son Benjamin Doyle to the world on September 13, 1989. They divorced after moving to Moab.
George held jobs ranging from the gas mines around Rock Springs, Wyoming, to hotel and resort management in Steamboat and Colorado Springs, to being a mail carrier and bartender in Moab. He loved people and had the gift of gab and the most piercing blue eyes you could ever imagine. George lived life to the fullest, took risks, and never looked back. He lived the equivalent of at least two lifetimes in his short 66 years on earth and will give ‘em hell in Heaven! George did it his way with no excuses or need for anyone’s approval. He was the most lovable jackass to ever walk the earth. George loved with all of his heart and lived with all of his soul, but he was tired.
George will be immensely missed by his wife, Judy of Moab; son, Ben (Toni) Copeland of Price; stepchildren, Ashley Stewart and Amber (Michael) Eggink of Las Vegas, Nevada; Matthew (Jackie) Keogh of Grand Junction, Colorado; and Jordan (Natalie) Keogh of Moab; 7 grandchildren: twins Preslie & Ace, Max Copeland of Moab, baby Cleo Copeland of Price; and Gracie, Matthew, and Walker Keogh of Grand Junction; his parents, Margaret and Bud Copeland of Greeley; sisters, Pat (Perry) Miller of Eaton, Colorado; Mickey (Jack) Yarmer of Greeley, Colorado; Jodi (Jim) McCarthy of LaSalle, Colorado; stepsiblings, Debra Bennett and Judy (Loyal) Gallatin of Greeley and Alan (Pam) Copeland of Port Angeles, Washington. His Martinez in-laws include Elisa, William (Glenda), Olivia, Ruby (Danny), Louisa, Julio, and Pete Jr. and he’ll be missed by several nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins, and a whole slew of great friends that number too many to mention—George never knew a stranger!
In Heaven, he joins his dad, Doyle, along with other family and friends.
Celebrations of George’s life will be held at a later date in Moab and Greeley, Colorado.
You may send condolences to the family at www.SpanishValleyMortuary.com.