A quintessential Westerner, Mickey Spalding moved to Aspen with nothing and, through his quiet resolve and unparalleled integrity, became a respected and loved pillar of the community. On October 19, 2022, at the age of 76, after battling cancer, Mickey passed away peacefully with family and friends in the house that he built in 1985.
Early in life, Mickey gained the experience that molded his character and unwavering work ethic, whether it was growing up in his 800 square foot Michigan home with five siblings and one bathroom, playing football in high school and at Eastern Michigan University, or working as a bouncer for the band The Irish Rovers.
Mickey arrived in Aspen in January 1970 on a roadtrip with a college friend. He stayed when he was “offered” a job as a maintenance man to work off his bill at the St. Moritz. Thus began Mickey’s career in property management. In the late-1970s he cofounded a successful property management company in Crested Butte. In the mid-1980s Mickey worked at Coates, Reid & Waldron, Aspen’s oldest property management firm, where he became President. From 1999 to 2006, Mickey operated his own property management firm and, in 2006, Mickey continued his career at Frias Property Management until he retired in 2014.
Mickey loved skiing and was uphilling before there was a term for it. An avid elk hunter, each year from 1975 to 2021, Mickey spent weeks in the Flat Tops Wilderness and, later, at a friend’s ranch, hunting elk. Mickey was also a ranch hand and horseman; for more than 20 years he worked with the cowboys at two Aspen ranches to raise and move cattle.
Above all, Mickey was a loving and devoted husband and father. In 1973, Mickey welcomed his daughter, Jen, to the world. In 1993, he met his wife Susan and her 2-year-old daughter, Natalie. A year and a half later, Mickey and Susan married and together raised their combined family. Mickey was also an active member of Grace Church in Basalt, where he and Susan have many close and wonderful friends.
The ancient author of Ecclesiastes wrote: “A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of birth.” Mickey gives life to these words: through his life and example, he enriched his community and blessed his friends and family; even as we mourn his passing, the world is better having had him.
Mickey died resting confidently in the promise that “neither death nor life, … nor anything in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God.” He is missed and remembered by his wife Susan, his daughter Jennifer and husband Doug, his stepdaughter Natalie and husband Matthew, two grandchildren William and Emma, and countless friends.
Please join Mickey’s family at 1:00 pm on Friday, October 28, 2022, at Grace Church of the Roaring Fork Valley at 1776 Emma Road in Basalt to mourn the loss of a wonderful man and to celebrate his life. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to Grace Church.