Obituary: Charles “Bud” Christmas, Jr., 85, of Scottville.

June 8, 2021

Bud Christmas

Obituary: Charles “Bud” Christmas, Jr., 85, of Scottville.

Fisherman, hunter, and all-around outdoorsman, Charles “Bud” Christmas, Jr. entered Jesus’ awaiting arms somewhat unexpectedly on Saturday, June 5, 2021 while at home. Bud was born in Battle Creek to Charles “Bud” Sr. & Rita (Jackel) Christmas on June 19, 1935. 

Bud had a variety of jobs in Mason County until he found his 30-plus year career at Harbison Walker Refractories – Dresser Industries in Ludington. Bud also owned and operated his own business for years, Christmas Heating, where he enjoyed assisting his community with their heating and cooling needs. Additionally, Bud was a fishing guide on the Pere Marquette and Little Manistee rivers, sharing his passion with so many and developing lifelong friendships along the way. Recognizing the financial difficulties of raising five children, his friend, Don Parsons (Mattix & Parsons) asked Bud to work odd jobs with him, or let him work off the cost of items for the family. He often worked three jobs at a time to provide for his family.

Bud attended high school in Mason County and then entered the U.S. Army and received his GED. He later received technical training and certification in HVAC. 

Bud married Rosetta McClellan on August 31, 1957, when they eloped and were married by the justice of the peace in Angola, Indiana. They enjoyed 45 years together before Rosy went to her heavenly home in 2002. In 2011, Bud married Marva Tousey in Muskegon and she proceeded him in death in 2017. Bud came back to live in Mason County, with his son, Marc for a short time, and then with his granddaughter, Tammy. 

Bud is survived by five children, Fred Christmas of Scottville, Tim (Kristy) Christmas of Custer, Christy Christmas of Ludington, Linda (Jeff) Wiersema of New Era, and Marc Christmas of Scottville; grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Tammy Lowe, Dave Wildfong and son Sawyer Wildfong of Scottville; Gary Soberalski (fiancé Tanya McVicker and children Ethan and MiKaylah McVicker and Alec VanSprecken) of Ludington; Matthew Christmas and sons Jayden and Liam Jensen of Walhalla; Heath Christmas (fiancé Amy Surrarrer and daughter Cheyenne Christmas) of Fountain; Chance (Fawn) Christmas and son Kannon Christmas of Scottville; Tangella (Stephen) Droste and soon to be born son, Braxton Droste of Custer; Lance Zaverl and son Hunter Zaverl of Grand Rapids; Tiffany Skinner and sons Easton and Beau Skinner of Scottville; and Cayla Christmas (fiancé Frank Sanders) of Fountain. He is survived by one sister, Margaret (Carlton) Sanders of Custer and sister-in-law, Vivian McClellan and brother-in-law, Emmanuel Fishel.  Bud also had a step-family, consisting of Judith (Dan Luebke) Bernard, Shelley (Gary) Bernard-Nelson, Carol Bernard, Laura (Michael) Webster, Kristin (Karl) Rylands, Bonnie (Kelly) Compton, Jennifer Tousey; several step- grandchildren; several great and great- great-step-grandchildren. 

Bud was preceded in death by his parents, his bride, Rosetta; his second wife, Marva; his sister Pearl Noel, brothers and sisters -in-law, Grace McClellan, Gerald and June McClellan, Everett and Ann McClellan, Lloyd and Naomi McClellan, Harry Lyle McClellan, Ivan and Margie McClellan, Joyce Fishel, Elmer and Vera Dust, Betty and Louie Ritter, and grandson-in-law, Wesley Skinner. 

Bud was an avid fisherman and hunter. He had a couple hunting buddies, Ed Pugh and Lyle Greene, and they traveled to Colorado for years to hunt mule deer. Bud also had the opportunity to elk hunt in Gaylord and moose hunt in New Hampshire. His fishing buddies, Art Barton, Jim Martin, and Jim Lynn spent hours on the rivers and the “Big Lake” with him. He introduced his children and many grandchildren to hunting and fishing and many of them are avid outdoorsman and women yet today.

Bud’s sense of humor and his kindness were appreciated by many. His huge hands and powerful handshake were a trademark. In his later years, each caregiver’s comments were led by what a sweet man he was. He was loved deeply. Special thanks to his caregivers, granddaughter Tammy Lowe, Michael Delaney, Shannon Bussey, Kate Payne, Jenna Silver, and daughters Linda and Christy. Additional thank you to the VA’s Northern Expansion Program and to Jennifer, Lindsey, Kim, Tressa, and Emily. We could not have navigated the past several years without you and the at-home program.

Bud received an American Bowling Congress Lifetime Achievement Award for his determination to return to bowling after a debilitating motorcycle accident. While Bud was not able to maintain his 200-plus average after his return, he was still able to contribute to his team and the fact he could bowl at all was nearly a miracle. He shared many a good bowling memory with buddies Chuck Riffle and Roger “Buff” Buffenbarger.

Friends may call during visitation from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday, June 10, 2021 at Oak Grove Funeral Home, 3060 West US 10, Ludington, where a service will follow at 1 p.m. with Pastor Darrell Storvik officiating. The final resting place will be at Brookside Cemetery in Scottville where a graveside service will be held immediately following the funeral home service. Friends and family are welcome to attend.

Those wishing to donate may choose from the following: McPhail Field youth programs through the City of Scottville, or to the family to assist with final expenses. Those wishing to contribute to a memorial tree to be placed near Rosy’s memorial tree at Victory Baptist Church may indicate so. 

The Oak Grove Funeral Home is in charge of funeral arrangements.

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