Dunning Idle IV, 90, passed away peacefully at Country Club Assisted Living on June 8, 2018. His wife and sons were with him when he passed.

Dunning was born in Muskegon, Michigan, but spent most of his childhood growing up in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, where he was fond of hiking through the battlefields. He graduated high school from the Mercersburg Academy in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. He started college at Gettysburg College, but interrupted his education to join the US Navy near the end of World War II.

After the war, Dunning resumed his education, receiving a BA from Princeton University and a Masters and PhD from Yale University, all in Foreign Affairs. Between Princeton and Yale he took a sabbatical and served as a National Park Ranger at Mount Rainier in Washington. He met his wife Mary in 1956 when they were both in the Ski Patrol in Davis, West Virginia. They spent 61 years of happy marriage together and raised two loving sons. In 1957, he joined the Central Intelligence Agency, where he worked until his retirement in 1986. While at CIA he supervised analysis of Vietnam for the duration of the Vietnam war and completed his career editing the President’s Daily Brief for President Reagan.

Dunning taught himself to climb and was a member of the Princeton Mountaineering Club. During a break from his Yale studies, he spent a summer working in Leadville, Colorado’s Climax Mine to get in shape for climbing in the Tetons and the Alps. He later climbed the Grand Teton and the Matterhorn, along with other challenging peaks. He took his entire family up easier ascents such as Pikes Peak, Mount Elbert, and Mount Whitney. He moved with Mary to Colorado Springs in 1989 and hiked Colorado mountains with the Saturday Knights for decades. He was able to ski until he was 86 and thought the world of Ski Cooper. He was a lover of classical music and hosted a chamber group of like-minded enthusiasts periodically at his home for years. Dunning was also very fond of bulldogs, owning five throughout his lifetime. They faithfully accompanied him on countless hikes through trails all over the country, but especially in Palmer Park in Colorado Springs.

Dunning is survived by his wife, Mary Chapin Idle, and sons Dunning Idle V and Winthrop Chapin Idle, as well as a nephew, niece, and three grandchildren, all of whom will remember him as a devoted and beloved family man.

A Celebration of Life service will be held at 10 am Saturday, June 23rd, at Shrine of Remembrance, 1730 East Fountain, followed by a reception at the Olympian Plaza Reception Center across the street. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to either:

Interim Hospice
1901 North Union Blvd
Colorado Springs, CO 80909


Colorado Springs Chorale
16 East Platte Ave
Colorado Springs, CO 80903

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