Rudi Fisher ‘saw natural beauty everywhere’ |

Rudi Fisher ‘saw natural beauty everywhere’

Marka Moser
Skiing was one of the bonds Rudi Fisher had with his children, the late architect's son and daughter say.

Bruce Rudi Fisher died of cardiac arrest early Tuesday morning at the Vail Valley Medical Center. He was 59.A memorial service is set for 11 a.m., Saturday, at Gracious Savior Lutheran Church in Edwards, with a reception immediately following at the church. Pastor Dan Rohlwing will officiate.Wise and compassionate, but never judgmental is how Andy Fisher describes his father Rudi. “He gave me advice that was invaluable in living my life,” Andy says. “Our relationship was much more than father and son – he was my best friend. And he was a heck of a Broncos fan, so I watched games with him from the time I was able to understand football.”Rudi easily immersed himself in the beauty of nature and loved hiking in the woods, Andy says, and he would be the first one to point out a sunset and the last one to look away from it.”My father saw the natural beauty everywhere,” Andy says. “That’s why he was such a successful architect. He could blend the natural with his designs.”

Rudi hiked and skied with his family, and picked up golfing when Andy became interested in the game. He was as a Buddy Werner League volunteer coach when his children raced in the local ski program, and skiing together on Thanksgiving and Christmas was family tradition, Andy says.Skiing was a special bond between Rudi and his daughter, Michelle, but, she says, the love of nature was certainly not the only gift Rudi bestowed upon his three children.”He gave us the gift of loving – loving each other, friends, nature and even the strangers around us,” Michelle says. “My father was a man with a huge heart, who was a wonderful listener. He made our lives so special.”Rudi loved books and read the newspapers religiously, clipping articles out to share with his staff, says Andy Berry, an apprentice architect who has worked for Fisher Architects for three years.”Rudi was the one who took me right out of college and became my mentor,” Berry says. “I learned so much from him that I will always value in the future. He treated us like part of his family, like his own kids. Rudi was genuine – that’s what people liked about him.”When Fisher sent personal notes with invoices because his clients were his friends, Berry says. Eric Borgerson, project manager for Fisher Architects, says Rudi was like a brother to him.

“Rudi’s a generous, giving, caring man. He gave me the opportunity to spread my wings and do what I do best,” Borgerson says. “I wouldn’t be in this area and as happy as I am if it wasn’t for Rudi.” ‘A fine legacy’Rudi Fisher was born Feb. 25, 1946 in Carroll, Iowa to Lowell and Luella (Rudi) Fisher. Because his father was in the Air Force, the family moved frequently. After completing high school in Nebraska, Rudi got a degree in architecture from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He first met his wife Kathi Jo Lasco when he was as a “hasher” in the boarding house where she lived. They were married May 1, 1971 in St. Paul, Minn. Rudi spent the winter of 1969-70 in Vail with college friend and Phi Kappa Tau fraternity brother, Ed “Goose” McWilliams, who says he is especially proud of being named godfather to the Fisher’s youngest son, Scott.”Rudi was a loyal husband, supportive father, genuine friend, a man of strong faith and an honest businessman,” McWilliams says. “He left a fine legacy, but died way too soon. It’s so sad, as he gained such enjoyment from his family.”

Fisher will be remembered as an honest man with an inquisitive mind, spontaneous wit, a smile on his face and a dedication to his profession, said close friend Sam Darby.”But his greatest love was for his family,” Darby added. “He did a lot for the valley and will be missed by so many people.”Fisher was an elder at Gracious Savior Lutheran Church and is a member of the Architecture Institute of America. In addition to his wife Kathi Fisher, owner of Vail Lights, Rudi Fisher is survived by his daughter, Michelle Fisher of Vail, a teacher at the Eagle County Charter Academy; two sons – Andy Fisher of Vail, an assistant golf professional at Eagle Springs in Wolcott, and Scott Fisher, who attends the University of Colorado; his parents, Lowell and Luella Fisher of Colorado Springs and Sun Lakes, Ariz.; brother Jim Fisher of Dallas; and a sister, Linda Fisher Bledsoe of San Antonio.In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Rudi Fisher Memorial Fund at the FirstBank of Avon to be used for a CU architecture scholarship.

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