Floyd Wayne Dolce
Floyd Wayne Dolce, 83, a longtime Cody resident and Wyoming native, died peacefully Aug. 26, 2010, at his home in Cody.
Floyd was a great man, husband and father. To know him was to love him. He loved Cody and Wyoming and made sure you knew it.
While working as a petroleum engineer in Saudi Arabia for ARAMCO for nearly 30 years, he put Cody on his itinerary almost every vacation to the U.S. He loved to fish for brook trout in Sunlight Basin - this was his "church."
Floyd was raised on a farm by his parents Inez and Frank. His three sisters Dorothy, Marjorie and Betty worked and lived between Lusk, his birthplace in November 21, 1926, northern Colorado and near Stevensville, Mont. It was farm life that taught him the work ethic he carried throughout his life.
Floyd's father moved the family to Cody in 1940 to be near his mother's relatives. His father purchased Modern Shoe Shop on Sheridan Avenue. He graduated from Cody High School in 1944 where he was an All-State center on the football team. Floyd was awarded a football scholarship to the University of Wyoming.
Upon arriving in Laramie he discovered the team disbanded as most of the football players were serving in World War II. He was then asked to play basketball. After some months in college he received a draft notice. Floyd joined the Merchant Marines and after the war enlisted in the Air Force until he was honorably discharged as a staff sergeant. He liked to say, "They got me twice."
He was a longtime member of the American Legion and Elks Club.
Floyd met his wife Virginia Halkiopoulo, who had moved to Cody from Egypt to be near her cousins the Apostolous. While working for Husky Oil Co. they married in Cody in 1954 at the Poker Church. He returned to UW on the GI Bill and earned a bachelor's in petroleum engineering in 1957.
His first son Frank was born in Laramie and his second son Mark was born in Southern California after he went to work for Standard Oil Co. of California, a parent company of the Arabian American Oil Co. (ARAMCO). It was with SOCAL where he answered the call for young engineers to work in the oil fields of Arabia. With Virginia's cultured background and ability to speak Arabic, French, Greek, Italian and English, they were on their way.
This was the beginning of a fulfilling career for him and a life of timeless and immeasurable rewards for his family. It was because of this career choice that he and his wife made and kept lifelong friends around the world and the U.S.
Floyd's intelligence, wit, wisdom, expansive sense of humor and tireless work ethic enabled him to develop into one of the world's foremost petroleum engineers. He worked his way up to General Manager of the ARAMCO Drilling Department and was responsible for all onshore and offshore drilling activity in Saudi Arabia.
Under his direction the department drilled hundreds of oil wells, some of which were the highest producing in the world. He retired home to Cody in 1985.
He never lost his ability to be humble and generous. He was an honest man you could trust for sound advice. One of his favorite phrases was "Turn it to the right." And when asked what he was doing, he would often wryly comment, "Waiting on cement."
He participated in many community activities while working overseas including Master of the Cub Scouts, acting as deacon for the Protestant Church, singing in the choir and teaching Sunday School for the children of numerous employees.
Floyd was affectionately known as "Ironclad" to the youngsters for a steely gaze that said you better watch your P's and Q's. His thick black mustache and sense of fairness led the Arabic speaking nationals to dub him "Abu Shenab," or "father of the mustache" in Arabic.
In 1965, Floyd's sense of adventure led him to purchase a Chevrolet 4x4 in the U.S. and put a camper on it. He shipped it to Europe and with his family then drove to Saudi Arabia. For the next two vacations he and his family drove the camper to Europe and back. His taste for the open road was only slowed by time and age.
He is survived by sons Frank and Mark, grandchildren Alexandra and Anthony, and several nieces and nephews.
Images & Attachments
|Obituary||Dolce, Frank (01/09/1888 - 12/24/1957)||View Record|