After graduating from City College and Fordham University School of Law, Mr. Gourdine served as an Army captain in Vietnam for 13 months. He helped investigate morale of the troops stationed in the Mekong Delta, according to his daughter.
The Gourdines moved to Riverdale in the late 1970s, where Laura Gourdine said her family got involved with Riverdale Presbyterian Church. The couple emphasized the importance of education, according to Laura Gourdine, who said she believes her father counted her and her two brothers’ graduations among his proudest moments. Also on that list, she said, was serving as a guard at Robert F. Kennedy’s funeral.
Mr. Gourdine was a longtime supporter of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the Police Athletic League and the Fresh Air Fund, according to Laura Gourdine.
“If you were someone he cared about or an issue he cared about, he gave 110 percent,” she said. “He was loyal … incredibly witty, powerful, and his presence, he was just really intelligent and very, very funny.”
Mr. Gourdine is survived by his wife, Patricia; daughter, Laura; son, David; son, Peter; daughter-in-law, Rebecca Fine; and granddaughter, Ella. He is also survived by sisters Sarah Franklin, Dorothy and Grace and brother, Henry.
Visitation was held at Riverdale-on-Hudson Monday evening. The funeral was held at the same place on Tuesday. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the United Nations Children’s Fund or the Obama-Biden presidential campaign.