Gordon Guyer was one of those people who, whenever there was an important position to fill, was always on the list. He was known and respected in every corner of the state through his MSU Extension work, and for his knowledge and his advocacy for Michigan State. He had an enormous capacity to connect with people and to rally support for good ideas. He saw the potential in people sometimes before they or others recognized it – after all he appointed Tom Izzo men’s basketball coach! This isn’t just a loss for this institution but it’s a deeply personal loss for Roy and me, so on behalf of the entire Spartan family we want to offer our most sincere condolences to Mary and to the rest of Gordon’s family.
— MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon
My heart goes out to Mary and the entire Guyer family. I’ll never forget when Gordon called me over to his house on campus to tell me what he was going to do with the basketball job. Not only was he responsible for my hiring, Gordon was even more responsible for my success. He was an important sounding board for me early in my career when others didn’t have as much faith in me. I am proud to have called him a trusted friend. And when you look at what he did to launch not only my career, but also President Simon’s, I’m proud to have played a very small part in what is an incredible legacy he leaves at Michigan State.
— Tom Izzo
Gordon, in his values, in his persona, and in his career, celebrated the roots—and the wings—of a world-class land-grant university, one that is elite without being elitist. I used to introduce him as the man who named Izzo the basketball coach and Denbow a vice president. And I’d say you get into any hall of fame if you bat .500. After one such attempt at self-deprecating humor, Gordon pulled me aside and said, ‘Hey Pardner, you’re my PR guy and are supposed to make me look good. So the next time you want to do that introduction, just end it at the Tom part.’ As always, I valued his wisdom and his laughter.
— Terry Denbow
As an Entomology student in the 70’s I quickly realized how important Gordon would be to my career. Little did I know that by 2014 we would meet again with me returning as Entomology Department Chair. Gordon was a exceptional ambassador for MSU Entomology and made countless contributions to the university, the State of Michigan, and the world. I had the good fortune to have lunch with Gordon and Mary last fall. He was still extolling the virtues of being an entomologist, solving problems, supporting students, and simply studying insects.

Thanks for all you did Gordon.
— Bill Ravlin
We were neighbors to the Guyers for over 18 years. Our heart goes out to his family. There will be many tributes to him for he was such a great man, but I want to say just how wonderful a neighbor he was. He always made time to ask “how are you?” “How are the boys?” “How is work going?” He would engage you and rarely talked about himself or his accomplishments but made you feel that you or your family were the most important things on his mind. Even though he had traveled the world and had so many accomplishments, he loved simple pleasures—his dog “Sparty” splitting wood, helping a neighbor and everything MSU.

Once we were holding a graduation party for our son in our back yard. Gordon was also hosting a party in his back yard. One of my son’s friends mistook our house for the Guyer house as he had never visited us before. He knocked on the Guyer’s door and when someone came to the door he said, “I have to go upstairs and use your bathroom and change my clothes” and he preceded into the Guyers house and changed out of his work clothes. He then came down the stairs and joined the Guyers at their party only to notice our party going on across the split rail fence. Where I live now my neighbors would have probably shot a stranger in their home, but it was just a joke to Gordon. We laughed about that many times.

I cannot put into words just how much we admired Dr. Guyer. He was such a good representative for MSU. He was a professor who did not pontificate. He was brilliant but not arrogant. He truly cared about the growth and development of others. He loved to learn. He could laugh.

His was a life well lived. We were truly blessed to know him and the rest of the Guyer family.
— Paul and Bonnie Davis
A leader with a superb, upbeat personality that could bring all things positive to the team. A great innovator with real insight into what makes a successful person and a program. Wonderful handshake and always a smile.
— Linda Nierman
I feel so fortunate to have begun my MSU Extension career under the leadership of Dr. Guyer. Those were halcyon years for the MSUE organization. His land-grant philosophy inspired an environment for MSUE County and University faculty to develop innovative and creative programs that met needs of local communities by extending MSU resources to the grassroots. He was not just a figurehead, but a true
participant throughout the process.

He certainly will be missed, but there is no doubt about his legacy on so many levels. He did make a difference!

My condolences to all his family.
— Marlene Caszatt
We send sincere words of sorrow as Dr. Gordon E. Guyer was such an important figure within our family. Dr. Guyer was one of my father’s most treasured and closest of friends, as they shared a lifetime of memories together. Dad, William (Bill) Harris Woodman, MSC class of ‘47, was deeply involved at State in the field of Agriculture and worked closely with Gordon over many decades. They both shared the same passion for higher education and the athletic programs at the

While I was the first 4th generation son to receive a degree from MSU, ‘74 - ‘76, it was my sister, Linda Woodman-Toliusis, who preceeded me, earning her B.A. degree in 1969. Uncle Gordie was always there for us, and at any time. His door was open, should we need advice or simply an enjoyable visit. He brought stability and comfort to us when we needed moral support.

How fortunate and blessed we and so many others have been to be among Dr. Guyers family of friends. If success is judged by the number of friends, Dr. Gordon E. Guyer was indeed very successful. His zest for life and constant caring compassion for his fellow man shall be his greatest achievement and legacy. Our loving thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. As ever yours, Jim and the entire Woodman family.
— Jim Woodman
Remembering your dad’s kind words every time he would see me. His wonderful smile will always be a lasting impression in my mind. My sincerest condolences to you Dan, and your family.........missing dad!
— Margie Aimery
I can see Gordon’s smile as he walked into a room and said “hello partner,” and you knew we all would be working together on something. And his child like excitement whenever he would talk about hunting camp. We have been blessed to call him a friend.
— Doug Darling

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