Merton “Bud” Gleason

Merton “Bud” Gleason

Merton “Bud” Gleason, formerly of Friday Harbor, WA and Dresden, N.Y., died Jan. 16, 2006 at Penn Yan Manor nursing home in Penn Yan, N.Y., after a long illness.

He was 85.

There are no calling hours or funeral planned. A memorial service will be scheduled for late spring in Hammondsport, N.Y.

The family would appreciate any memorial donations be given in Bud’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association, 435 E. Henrietta Road, Rochester, N.Y. 14620; or to the Penn Yan Manor, 655 N. Liberty St., Penn Yan, N.Y. 14527.

Born in Auburn, N.Y., on June 11, 1920, Bud was the son of the late Alderman Francis and Jessie Gleason. He graduated from Hammondsport Central School in 1937 and served in the Army Air Corps from 1942-1945.

He met Zereda “Bea” Percival of Creeches, Ky., while she was visiting her sister in Sacramento, Calif., and he was stationed at Hamilton Field, Calif. They married on Bud’s birthday, June 11, 1944. Bea pre-deceased him on Jan. 1, 1985.

Bud had a widely varied work life. He was a salvage diver, built dirt-track race cars, was a ship’s engineer and cannery engineer in Alaska for several seasons, owned an appliance sales and service business in Friday Harbor, built docks and harvested kelp, among other endeavors.

He lived with his family in Friday Harbor from 1961 to 1972, then returned to upstate N.Y. and took over the family vineyards. He retired in the mid-1980s and continued to live in the Finger Lakes region of New York until his death, but always regretted leaving the San Juans.

Bud enjoyed collecting firearms and traveling, and had lifelong interests in aviation, boats and anything mechanical. He had an impish sense of humor and loved to tell jokes.

He will be sorely missed by his children, Patricia Gleason of Austin, Texas, and Kirk (Colleen) Gleason of Jacksonville, Fla.; and by his long-time companion, Hannah Johncox of Dresden, N.Y.

He is also survived by his sisters, Lois Davidson of Hammondsport, N.Y., and Margery Brundage of Tucson, Ariz.; a brother, Raymond Gleason of Wayne, N.Y.; as well as two grandchildren, Heather and Amanda, and one great-grandchild.

— The Merton “Bud” Gleason family