MIDLAND – Carl Joseph Olson Jr., affectionately known as “Bud,” passed away peacefully on the afternoon of November 23, 2019, with family present. He was diagnosed with advanced stage pancreatic cancer in mid-October. Bud forsook receiving treatment with chemotherapy or radiation, as he was content to live out the rest of his time near to his wife and family. While this condition was not an easy one for Bud, he shared laughter and joy with visitors and family throughout his final weeks of life.
This beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend was born in Pontiac, MI on March 21st, 1935. Bud was the quarterback of his high-school football team, where he met his future wife, who was a cheerleader at the time. Thirty-eight years of Bud’s life were dedicated to working for General Motors, where he was a Distribution Manager. One of the easiest ways to locate Bud throughout his adult life, if there was ever any question, would simply be to find the nearest golf course. This golf enthusiast spent five days a week on the course, in the Arizona sunshine, and loved every minute of it.
Bud is survived by his high-school sweetheart and wife of 62 years, Marlene Olson (Cook); four children Mary Kim Quinn (J.J.), Karen Montgomery, Carl Michael Olson (Kathy) and Lynn Mieske (Matthew) and his nine grandchildren; Ryan, Andrew, Olivia, Justin, Carly, Lindsay, Shannon, Zach and Jessica. He was pre-deceased by his brother David Olson and his son-in-law Troy Montgomery. Bud had a unique sense of humor, which brought laughter to any gathering that had the privilege of his attendance. His sense of humor is still very much alive in his descendants, a legacy that brings both joy and peculiar looks with it. This grandfather instilled confidence in his grandchildren through the simple lessons he taught them, including experiences learning how to fish, golf and drive his golf cart around the subdivision under his watchful eye.
It is difficult to summarize the life of a man as highly adored as Bud, but as he described it, “he lived a very good life.” He loved his family well. In fact, he loved them well enough to leave the warmth of Arizona to move closer to them in Michigan. Bud was a patient man who set an example for others, by the way that he cared for his wife, through her diagnosis with dementia. He quickly became an adored member of the Primrose Assisted Living community, where he spent his last months. The family wants to thank this wonderful community, as well as their entire team, for the dignity, respect and love that they treated Bud with in his final days of life. This team created an environment fit for the most special man, which allowed him to be comforted in his time of greatest need. Bud was held by family members as he took his last restful breaths. A short time after his death, the sun shone through the clouds creating a beautiful sunset, no doubt a symbol of a serene ending to Bud’s story.
A beautiful reflection of this wonderful man’s heart can be remembered by his final words, which were “I love you babe.”
Smith-Miner Funeral Home is honored to be serving the Olson family; to share a special memory please visit www.smithminer.com.