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Roger 'Bud' Hannaford

There’s no place like home.

Judy Garland said it.

Bud Hannaford lived it.

Bud was born in Marion, a son of the Hannaford legacy rooted in the earliest years of the town’s 19th century beginnings.

Bud lived nearly his whole life here, and even in those years he was away at college, serving in the Army in the Korean War, and teaching social studies in El Dorado, Bud’s heart never left town.

And Bud was so thoroughly Marion he insisted his life end here. No big city hospitals, thank you. Staying right here in Marion suited Bud just fine.

Between beginning and end, Bud lived a life that was in most respects quintessentially Marion. It is said we reflect what we love, and Bud loved Marion.

Love of family? Bud had that one down, particularly when it came to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Service to the community? Others know and can recount his activities much better than I might. The list would be long, and Marion would be different if he hadn’t had each of those items on his ‘must do’ list. Bud was a good model to look to if you wanted to see how being engaged can bring about change.

I’ve always thought the word “easygoing” was a good descriptor for Bud. But I’m not sure I looked close enough.

It’s hard to imagine “easygoing” Bud being burned in effigy. But Bud had the drive to be a standout running back on the Marion High School football team, and his number was picked to adorn the dummy burned by a rival high school.

I picture “easygoing” Bud with his familiar lazy stroll, and then contrast that against his love of skiing. Bud Hannaford blazing down slopes at speeds sometimes exceeding his ability, and tumbling head over heels as a result? I just have to grin.

For a man I’ve heard described by some as frugal in nature, the revelation that “easygoing” Bud dared to risk his money (and lost) investing in worms leaves me scratching my head in mild disbelief.

I do know those who found themselves at odds with “easygoing” Bud on matters of principle, or things about which Bud had strong, informed opinions, found “easygoing” definitely had its limits.

Anyone who sums up Bud with the word “easygoing” and leaves it at that is probably someone who went through college reading Cliff’s Notes and cribbing off classmates’ notes. There’s a whole lot more to the “Book of Bud” than that.

I’ve learned a lot about Bud in the past few days, and it’s impossible for me to include what I’d like in this small space. I’m sure Bud doesn’t mind – being Grand Marshal on Old Settlers’ Day was more than enough recognition for him.

Family members fondly look at Bud’s ride in the Old Settlers’ Day parade as a chance for him to say good-bye to the community he loved so much, and his waves that day were heartfelt and plentiful.

But I wonder if maybe, just maybe, he was waving hello as well. After all, this was Bud. This was home, the Marion he loved, and there’s no place like home.

So Bud waved.

And Marion waved back.

Hello, Bud. Welcome home.

— david colburn

Last modified Oct. 6, 2011

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