Abstract

Dick Rousselot, christened Norman Richard Rousselot, died suddenly at his home on April 25, 1996. While still endowed with vigor and vitality that belied his age, Dick lay down for awhile and fell into a deep sleep from which he did not awaken. He was born in Whittier, California, March 8, 1926, and graduated from Whittier High School in 1944. He was inducted into the U.S. Navy that year and served two years in the Pacific theater. Upon leaving the service, he enrolled at the University of California at Los Angeles in 1946 and graduated with a degree in geology in 1950. He was employed by Seaboard Oil Company that year in Midland, Texas; later he transferred to Roswell, New Mexico, and then returned to Midland. Dick's years with Seaboard covered the era of many successful ventures by the company in the boom years that spread development along the Horseshoe atoll. When Seaboard Company merged into Texaco, he left the company and was employed by Joseph I. O'Neill, where he was an exploration geologist for three years. In 1960, he became an independent geologist and was active in the acquisition of mineral interests that proved to be judicious investments. His greatest contribution and legacy to his profession was when he and his partner, Kingdon R. Hughes, created the Subsurface Library in 1962, a depository of geological information that was made available to geologists on a subscription basis. As companies were sold or absorbed by larger companies, the Subsurface Library acquired their files, amassing the largest volume of geological data in the area that was publicly available. Perhaps as many as 2000 geologists' careers were aided and/or enhanced by the existence of the Library. Consultants who previously had to beg, borrow, yes, even "mooch," information could find at the Library the data needed in furthering their careers. His foresight and innovation have benefited the profession for more than 34 years. He was a member of AAPG, the West Texas Geological Society, and the Society of Independent Professional Earth Scientists. Outside his profession, Dick could be counted on to perform his civic duties in his characteristic self-effacing manner. He was active in the Mental Health Mental Retardation Association and served as vice-chairman for two years. Dick was a private person, and the depth and breadth of his knowledge was concealed by his reserved, calm, and gentle nature. Few would know of his grasp of geology beyond the boundaries of the Permian basin. From the coastal ranges of California to the Cortez Mountains of the Great Basin, he was at home with the processes of the Earth. Somewhere in the Cortez Range, he inadvertently left his rock hammer 45 years ago, a frail monument but a recurring memory of past enjoyment of newly found knowledge. In recent years, wanderlust, coupled with recreation, led him and his wife, Neva, to travel extensively. They enjoyed the foot trails of England on several trips. Spain, the Baltic region, and across the world to New Zealand and Australia, they traveled to enjoy the natural and man-made wonders of the world. But as to all things on this planet, change is inexorable, and a loving husband, father, and friend, is lost to us. Survivors include his wife, Neva McGuire Rousselot (whom he married in 1955); two sons, Rex Rousselot of Morgan Hill, California, and Lee Rousselot of Midland, Texas; a brother, Terry Rousselot of Newport Beach, California; seven grandchildren and two nieces. A son, Terry, predeceased him in 1993.

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