Cover photo for Christopher Paul Wilhelm's Obituary
Christopher Paul Wilhelm Profile Photo
1972 Christopher 2023

Christopher Paul Wilhelm

November 9, 1972 — July 21, 2023

Christopher Paul Wilhelm, 50, passed away on July 21, 2023.  

Christopher Paul Wilhelm was born November 9, 1972 in Pocatello, Idaho to Linda (Jackson) and Travis Wilhelm. He graduated from Pocatello High School. Chris attended Idaho State University, obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Ecology followed by further research and GIS certificate. During a pause in his college studies, Chris attended and graduated from the Idaho Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST).

Chris married Jennifer Niehans in 1996. Although classmates since middle school, their relationship began during the college years, and flourished into 27 years of marriage and adventures.

Following high school, Chris worked for the City of Pocatello in the Recreation Department teaching rock climbing, kayaking, hiking, and Nordic skiing. Additionally, he was an outdoor guide for NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School). He worked at local outdoor retail shops including Gateway Cyclery and Scott’s Ski and Sports. Chris served our community as a Police Officer for the City of Pocatello. A return to Idaho State University to complete his degree provided an opportunity to perform research on the Portneuf River for Three Rivers RC&D, under the US Department of Agriculture. In 2007, Chris began work at the Pocatello FBI Data Center, contracted initially in security, and years later in facility management. He was most recently employed by Dean-Fluor, within the FBI Data Center, an integral behind the scenes aspect of supporting the work of protecting our national security.

Play and adventure was a natural focus for Chris. He began downhill skiing at age 5, never missing a season until slowed by cancer treatment. He raced BMX bikes in middle school, ran track, played basketball and high school football. Near the end of high school, Chris found his calling in the great outdoors. He would work for the recreation department, then head out for his own adventure on the rocks, hills, mountains, or rivers. Winter involved downhill and Nordic skiing, and ice climbing during his 20’s. Cycling, whether road or mountain biking, was always a passion. In his 20’s, Chris took a once in a lifetime opportunity to trek into base camp of Mount Everest, spending a night over 17,000 feet elevation and mountaineering up to the Khumbu Icefall.

Chris and Jen’s son Alex was born in 2002. Chris was an outstanding father, and the family enjoyed many an adventure enhanced by his outdoor skills. Chris strapped skis on Alex by age 4, assured a yearly out of town ski trip (or 2-3) in addition to many days at Pebble Creek. Determined to take his family on a multi-day raft trip down the Main Salmon River, he scoured for a permit, then captained the raft for multiple unforgettable trips with friends. Chris joined ranks as a coach the year the Pocatello Pioneer Mountain Bike team added a middle school age group, supporting Alex riding from middle school through his senior year in high school. He was our family bike builder, mechanic and coach. A skilled carpenter, Chris led the remodel of our home in a historic neighborhood. Education was always a priority. Chris was so proud of Alex’ accomplishments thus far as he attends University of Utah on an academic scholarship.

Chris passed away peacefully at home in the comfort of family, due to metastatic kidney cancer after a valiant and courageous fight. There is much adventure, love, amazing fathering, and zest of life he packed into too few years. He will be missed beyond measure. We would like to thank his coworkers and employer Dean-Fluor for flexible work and the support provided, all team members at Portneuf Medical Center from facilities management to pharmacists, RNs, NPs, and physicians for exceptional care, and Symbii Hospice for your guidance and compassion.

Chris is survived by his wife Jennifer and son Alex, mother Linda (Colin) Jackson, father Travis (Arla) Wilhelm, sister Amanda (Chris) Barrett, niece/nephew Scarlett and Tate Barrett, numerous cousins, aunts and uncles.

He was preceded in death by Bobette Wilhelm (cousin), uncles Wayne Wilhelm and Glen McGhuey, and grandparents Merle and Hope Wilhelm, Lloyd and Rose McGhuey.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Chris’ honor to the Pocatello Pioneer bike team will be used towards registration, fees, and equipment for student riders who may have difficulty meeting the financial aspect of participation. Venmo @pocatello-pioneers

Join our family in remembering Chris during a celebration of life gathering on Friday July 28th between 5-7 pm at Colonial Funeral Home.

Memories and condolences may be shared by visiting the Tribute Wall tab above.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Christopher Paul Wilhelm, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Friday, July 28, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Mountain time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Visits: 8

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree