Caroline Dudley

Caroline Eva Dudley

Friday, November 7th, 1924 - Tuesday, November 10th, 2020
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Caroline Goetzel Dudley, 96, of Greeley, passed away on November 11, 2020 in Greeley, Colorado. She was the third child born to Louis and Marguerite (Winckel) Goetzel, born at home on November 7, 1924 in Crook, Colorado.
She attended and graduated from Greeley High in 1942, later completing her bachelor’s degree, followed by a master’s degree in economics at the University of Denver in 1952.
Caroline loved Colorado, but opportunity and adventure led her to Chicago, and ultimately to the Upper West Side of New York City, where she thrived for nearly 65 years. While in New York, she cultivated many friendships, and in 1967 married her husband, actor and writer Bronson Dudley.
Caroline worked as a writer and freelance editor for most of her working life. Her keen eye for factual details, sophisticated command of language, and discerning intelligence made her a valuable contributing editor, providing indexing, fact-checking and writing to Crowell-Collier & MacMillan, Funk & Wagnalls Encyclopedia, Doubleday, Vanguard, H. W. Wilson, Viking, Grosset & Dunlap, and other publishing houses and publications. For decades many encyclopedias had her hand in their development.
On her own time, she wrote poetry and plays, and pursued drawing and painting, with special interest in political cartooning. Literature and magazines were her best company until she died; Caroline read rabidly about current research in the fields of archeology, science, history and medicine, in addition to revisiting classic literature. She was lively in conversation, bringing an educated and opinionated perspective on wide-ranging matters.
Caroline and Bronson shared compassion for non-human creatures, and they built a secondary career rescuing animals from the streets and parks of the city. Often hosting a dozen or more cats and the occasional dog or squirrel in her apartment, Caroline was almost expert in her medical care and training of injured and abandoned creatures. She eventually became talent agent and handler for many of their beautiful, rescued cats who went on to be featured in films, magazine and TV ads, soap operas, cat food labels and more. Caroline treated her cats with respect and gentleness. She made an impact as a champion of ethical treatment of animals in film and photo production, eschewing unnatural, gimmicky or costumed portrayal of animals. They were central to her life and sense of family.
Although she lived far away, she took great pride in her roots in Colorado, and the family history tracing back to Belgium. In 2019, at age 94, Caroline relinquished her beloved NYC apartment of sixty years and returned to live in Greeley. She settled in at the Greeley Place, and was happy to be near family members and the landscape of her childhood.
Caroline is survived by her sister, Evelyn Elfstrom; step-daughter Jane Dudley and family; step-son Bert Bodeewes and family; nieces and nephews, Mike Goetzel, Linda (Michael) Quist, Larry (Kim) Rea, Elizabeth Rea, Lynn (Clay) Frederick, James Goetzel, Margo Elfstrom. Other relatives include great nieces and nephews. She was very fond of longtime friends in NYC, including Germaine Cuomo, Penny Ashton, Richard Gross and Carol Sumner, among others.
She was preceded in death by her husband Bronson, her parents Louis and Marguerite; siblings Catherine Powell, Robert Goetzel, Bertha Jean Rea and Allan John Goetzel.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in honor of Caroline Dudley can be made to: Best Friends Animal Society ( She respected Best Friends Animal Society as an excellent no-kill shelter, and chose it to receive donations in her name.
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Bert Bodeewes

Posted at 07:51pm

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