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Frank Alton "Bud" Dudek


1923 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Frank Alton "Bud" Dudek Obituary
Frank Alton "Bud" Dudek of Durango, Colorado passed away May 25, 2018 after enjoying a good life for 95 years. He was born in Chatfield, Minnesota on February 5, 1923, the youngest of 3 children and only son of Frank A Dudek and Lyda E (Williams) Dudek.

Bud met Mary Elizabeth Wright in grade school and they graduated from Chatfield High School in 1941. The following year, they married and took over the family farm near Chatfield, Minnesota. In 1956 Bud moved the family to Durango, Colorado and started a tire business with brother-in-law called "Bud and Johnnie's General Tire" on Main St, Durango. In 1959 he got into the water treatment business in Durango as well as starting the local ice business with his good friend Wesley Bonds.

In 1964 he moved the family to Sturgis, Michigan when he began working at Culligan, Inc. as Sale and Service Rep. and later purchased a Culligan water treatment dealership in Albion, Michigan. Bud had a keen eye for building things and he began designing & building industrial regeneration systems for water treatment for various dealerships across the US.

In 1986 his wife, Mary, passed away and 2 years later he moved back to Durango, Colorado. He lived in his RV on property with a garage where he continued part time work. He also spent a few winters at Parker Dam, Arizona. During his time in Durango, Colorado, Bud met and married Mary Ellen Howell in 1994. They build and made their home in the valley just north of the Durango.

Bud enjoyed hunting and fishing and exploring the mountains of Southwestern Colorado in his younger life. There were family jeep trips and camping in the mountains. He also loved traveling the US as well as trip to Europe. At home he was always puttering in his garage, fixing equipment and finding new ways to make old things work again. Later in his life he loved taking his kitties outside for a walk in the yard especially his cat, Smudge.

Bud was a member of Durango Jaycees and BPOE lodge #507 and worked on many projects for the community. In the 1960's he helped the Jaycees place a tower on Missionary Ridge to broadcast a local television station to the area. As an active member of the Elks, Bud enjoyed working at their picnic grounds whether it was mowing or building their "heavy duty" picnic tables and several grills. He always loved taking the family out to the Elks Picnic grounds for family reunions.

He was predeceased by his parents Frank and Lyda Dudek; his wife of 44 years, Mary Elizabeth (Wright) Dudek, his sisters; Dorothy Ruth of Cortez, Colorado and Jean Goldsmith of Chatfield, Minnesota.

He is survived by his wife of 24 years, Mary Ellen Dudek of Durango, Colorado, his children: Ronald Dudek and spouse, Diana Bristol of Bayfield, Colorado; Susan Greene and spouse, Richard Greene of Glenburn, Maine; and Anita Watson and spouse, Roy Watson of West Lafayette, Indiana. He also leaves behind 6 grandchildren: Sherry Hibbard of Sturgis, Michigan; Richard Dudek and spouse Nicole Dudek, of Sturgis Michigan; Reshanna Greene and partner, Jeffrey Aslen of Edgewater, Maryland; Nicole Greene and spouse, Jason Prairie of Southport, North Carolina; Keith Watson and spouse, Wendy Watson of West Lafayette, Indiana; and Kory Watson of LaQuinta, California, as well as great grandchildren: Wyatt Dudek, Sturgis, Michigan; Chloe Watson and Sean Watson of Lafayette, Indiana; and another great grandchild due in September. He is also survived by Mary Ellen's children: Alan Reid, Kristine Smith, Shanna Lee Kinney and her spouse, Roy Kinney, and Shane Reid; 4 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.

An informal Memorial Service will be held Monday, July 30, 2018 at 10:30 AM at the Elks Picnic Grounds on Florida Rd, County Road 240, Durango. All friends and family are welcome to share memories and special thoughts of Bud. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Palliative Care of Mercy Hospital, Durango, Colorado. Interment will be held in in Chatfield, Minnesota later this fall.
Published in The Durango Herald on July 23, 2018
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