Eulogy for Ward M. (Bud) Tuttle
August 01, 2020
by Pastor John Partridge
Almost exactly two years ago, many of us were in this same place as we remembered the life of Arden Tuttle and today, we are here to remember the love of Arden’s life, Ward M. (Bud) Tuttle.
As I spoke with Bud’s family this week, much as we did two years ago, much of our conversation revolved around travels and adventures. And all our talking about travels and adventures got me to thinking about JRR Tolkien’s books, particularly “The Hobbit” which was recently made into several movie. At the beginning of the story of “The Hobbit,” Bilbo Baggins, who is a hobbit himself, says,
“We are plain quiet folk, and I have no use for adventures. Nasty, disturbing, and uncomfortable things. Make you late for dinner!”
But, unlike Hobbits, some human beings seem to be born into a life of adventure and are just built for a life that is filled with them. Bud Tuttle was one of those people. Bud’s parents were travelers and, not surprisingly, when they did, Bud went with them. And whatever happened on their travels together, the traveling, and the spirit of adventure that often found there, got into Bud’s blood.
But before we talk too much about Bud’s adventure, let’s go back closer to the beginning. Bud was born in Knightstown, Indiana, and grew up on a farm. In high school, Bud was small, and by small, I mean thin. Really thin. And when his mom gave him an ultimatum, to either play football in the fall or go with his friends and drive to California over the summer, Bud’s adventurous spirit won the day. And, after high school, he found his way here, to Alliance, to study at Mount Union.
In 1948, while he was at Mount Union, he met Arden. Now, understand that Arden was a looker. When she arrived, it seemed as if every male on campus noticed her arrival. She had 14 dates the first week, and Bud, who met her on her first day here, was one of them. But although she was the center of attention and had plenty of men competing for her attention, Bud was the one, and she took the bull by the horns and told him that she loved him. Maybe it was because rather than trying to impress her, Bud had spent their time together teaching her how to play bridge.
Soon after college, they were married, but then Bud was inducted into the Army, in the finance office, during the Korean Conflict, and Arden was by his side as he went to training and then stationed in Indiana, and later in Germany, while everyone else that Bud had trained with went to Korea.
In the story of “The Lord of the Rings,” JRR Tolkien wrote, “It’s a dangerous business… going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no telling where you might be swept off to.”
And, before long, Bud and Arden were regularly being swept off down the road to all sorts of adventures. They visited 103 countries on six continents and, of all the places that they went, London was far and away Arden’s favorite. (She visited there 15 times!) Early on, Bud had also made it a goal to visit all 50 states, and he did, even if he had to drive several hours out of his way so that he could get out of the car, and add another state to his list.
And after that first date playing bridge in college, they loved the game together, and continued playing, often twice a week, and sometimes Bud would substitute for Arden and be the only man playing in the ladies’ bridge group. Bud was a member of the Rotary club for something like 43 years, and over the years he also belonged to the Shriners, Indian Guides, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and was a member of Alliance Country Club pretty much forever. His children said that, as they were growing up, anytime there was a leadership position that came open in one of their youth organizations, Bud would step up and fill it. And he was still doing that last year when I asked him to serve on a committee at church. If it needed done, he did it; if it needed moved, he moved it.
If you knew Arden, you knew that she was not a fan of sports, but Bud was a different story altogether. Despite taking a trip to California to avoid playing football, Bud was athletic and played basketball throughout high school, and somehow ended up on the football team anyway. At one point he was the city champion ping-pong player, and we all know how much he loved to play golf. He tried skiing in his 30’s but that experiment ended so badly that Bud not only never skied again, he could never really go bowling afterward either. But, as much as Bud enjoyed athletic activities, he never much cared for, or participated in, any kind of exercise just for the sake of exercising.
Bud liked to watch sports as well as participate in them. He was a big fan of the Ohio State, and the Cleveland Brown (at least in those unusual years when they were fun to watch), and no matter where their travels might have taken them, Bud always needed to know the score of the latest Mount Union game. He played basketball with Jim, but when he attempted to play with his grandchildren, they were worried that it might just be too much for him and insisted that they play HORSE instead. And, along those same lines, as much as Bud loved golf, everyone noticed that as his age began to catch up with him, the rules of golf began to, um, relax, a little.
And Bud’s love of competition didn’t stop at sports. Their family was a family of games players. They played all kinds of card games, and all kinds of board games, although Bud was not a fan of Risk and Arden did not like Monopoly. And if Bud was alone, he challenged himself by solving jigsaw puzzles. Not easy one, and as you or I would define them, not even hard ones. But huge, ridiculously complex puzzles. Puzzles with 10,000 pieces (seriously). And even that wasn’t difficult enough for Bud, so he would work at those gigantic puzzles with specific rules that he made up to make them even harder, or he would turn the puzzles upside down and solve the blank side without the picture. And woe to the poor unfortunate soul who might offer him help or assistance or dared to move the pieces because he seemed to know exactly where he had left every single piece.
But just as Bud grew up idolizing his father who travelled a lot, Bud’s children grew up travelling with Bud and Arden. Whenever there were two or three weeks of vacation time, they would set out. JRR Tolkien once said, “Home is behind, the world ahead.” And that could have described their family vacations. At 6:00 am every morning they were on their way and would try to add a few new states to Bud’s list on every trip but would almost certainly stop at every tourist attraction and museum that had a sign along the road. Sometimes they stayed at Howard Johnson hotels, but for two or three years, when Bud was the General Manager at a trailer factory, they would rent a trailer for their journeys. They drove to the New York World’s Fair in 1965, they drove to Yellowstone National Park with a playpen in the back of the car, and there was on time when Randy accidently leaned a folding chair against the side of the crank-up trailer, and it stayed there until they were preparing to pull out for the day’s journey when one of his brothers was cranking down the trailer, and it got jammed… and stuck. That year, the rented trailer was, eventually returned, but not exactly in its original, undamaged, condition.
But Bud wasn’t all about work and competition either. He was proud to be from Alliance, and he was proud of anyone who had come from Alliance. When hometown boy, Len Dawson was scheduled to play in the first Super Bowl, Bud made sure that he sent Len a telegram to wish him luck in the game. Bud also collected stories, and jokes (and occasionally his jokes were funny). He liked listening to anyone who could tell a good story. He knew a zillion of them and would tell them when the time was right, which was almost always. One of his most famous stories was of a trip that he had made with a friend, in which they got lost in the fog in Tallahassee, and found themselves, as Bud would describe it, going “bumpity, bump, bump” down the stairs of the Florida state capitol building in their car.
And, even though they were separated by four or five states, Bud attended many of his grandchildren’s graduations and other events. What’s more, Bud was always curious about the lives of his grandchildren, the events in which they participated, and he always remembered what they told him in every conversation, so that the next time he would ask how things went.
Despite his age, Bud was surprisingly good with new technology. Better, in fact, than some people who are several decades younger. Bud was pretty savvy on the computer, he printed all of his checks on his computer rather than write them by hand, he regularly used his Apple watch, and lately he has been participating, weekly, in the Rotary Club as well as his church Sunday school class via Zoom meetings.
In the last few years, Bud’s children tried to convince him to move to Atlanta to be closer to them but, not surprisingly, his roots here were just too strong. His friends were here, his home… and his heart, were here in Alliance.
But finally, Bud has left his home and begun the greatest adventure of them all. Truly, “Home is behind, the world ahead” and eternity awaits.
May those of us who remain behind be as faithful to our communities, to our churches, and to our families as Bud was.
Bon voyage, sir. Clear skies and fair winds to you. Fare thee well.
Obituary for Ward M. (Bud) Tuttle
Ward M. (Bud) Tuttle, age 91, of Alliance, passed away early in the morning on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 at Alliance Community Hospital.
He was born November 18, 1928 in Knightstown, Indiana to Benjamin and Fern (Dennis) Tuttle.
Bud graduated from Mount Union College in 1950 with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance. At Mount Union, he was a member of the ATO fraternity.
Bud served in the US Army from 1950 – 1952 and was stationed in Germany for part of his service.
He had a long career as a Finance and Accounting professional, holding management positions, e.g. Comptroller with Alliance Machine, ET Rugg Company and Northern Petrochemical. He then bought and operated Lake Cable Travel before selling the business and travelling the world.
Bud visited 6 continents, 103 countries and all 50 states. He also truly enjoyed being a parent and grandparent, playing golf, bridge and board games and gathering with his friends for Wednesday dinners and Monday coffee. He also was an avid sports fan supporting Mount Union, Ohio State, and the Cleveland Browns.
Bud was married to Arden E. (Davis) Tuttle, his world-travelling partner, for 68 years before her passing in 2018.
Bud was a member of Christ United Methodist church. He was very active in the Alliance community life. In 2009, Bud and Arden were awarded the Alliance Mayors Citizenship award for continuous involvement in the Alliance Community. Some of his civic memberships included Rotary, Shriners, Indian Guides, and Cub and Boy Scouts. He also was a long-time member of Alliance Country Club.
Survivors include : 3 children in Atlanta, Ga – Jeff Tuttle, Jim (Beth) Tuttle and Joyce Tuttle and 1 son in Columbus, Indiana – Randy (Edna) Tuttle; Brother, Robert (Marilyn) Tuttle of Harrisburg, Virginia; and 7 grandchildren, Josh Tuttle of State College, Pennsylvania, Jaime (Martin) Gutfeldt of Chicago, Illinois, Ben Tuttle of New York, NY, Courtney Tuttle of Atlanta, Georgia, Cristy (Derek) Hanke of Columbus, Indiana, and Megan and Bryan Tuttle also of Columbus, Indiana.
Calling hours will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, August 1st at Cassaday-Turkle-Christian Funeral Home. Interment will be at Fairmount Memorial Park.
Arrangements are by Cassaday-Turkle-Christian Funeral Home, 75 S. Union Ave., Alliance, OH 44601.