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Forensic psychologist Kevin Gully dies

He helped abused children and adults

Kevin Gully
Kevin Gully
Family Photo

SALT LAKE CITY — Kevin Gully, a Utah forensic psychologist whose career revolved around helping children and adults who had been abused or suffered other traumatic experiences, has died.

He was 58.

In his work as a forensic psychologist at Primary Children's Center for Safe and Healthy Families, Gully had extensive dealings with abused children and adults, victims of domestic violence, homeless people and individuals who were in court custody.

Julie Bradshaw, the center's director, said she was struck by Gully's rapport with people.

"It was a joy to watch him work with very young patients, as he was able to find the 'inner child' in a heartbeat," Bradshaw said. "He would work with the toughest kids and parents and find their strengths and improve the family's trajectory."

Gully's sister-in-law, Janice Perry Gully, echoed those sentiments.

"He had a great depth of concern and love for children and others who had been abused," she said.

But although Kevin Gully's work was extremely important to him, there was another side to the man as well.

"The Kevin that I knew loved the outdoors and he was the consummate family man — he raised two incredible young men with his wife, Pamella Spence," said Janice Perry Gully. "He had a rich work life and he had a rich personal life."

As a family member, he also was indispensable.

"He was somebody we could all rely on," Janice Perry Gully said.

Kevin Gully was an associate professor at the University of Utah. Among other things, he was respected as a researcher, educator and mentor.

His work in improving the Utah criminal justice system earned him the Utah Supreme Court's Amicus Curiae Award in 2007. The high court's chief justice also appointed him to the system's Guardian ad Litem Oversight Committee.

In 2008 Gov. Jon Huntsman appointed Gully to the board of the State Division of Child and Family Services.

Gully was the fifth child of Walter James Gully and Helen Harriet Mondloch. Kevin Gully and Pamella Spence were married on June 25, 1975 and reared two sons, Adam Spence and Eric John.

Gully is survived by his wife and sons; sister Nana Gully Penrose; twin brothers Monty and William (Tina), and many other relatives including nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother James.

Friends are invited to a celebration of Gully's life on Tuesday, Feb. 23, from 6-8 p.m. at Larkin Sunset Lawn, 2350 E. 1300 South, Salt Lake City.