Sunday, November 4, 2012

Rudy Budach

                                                          IN M E M O R I A M

                                                                    Rudy Budach
                                                             Sept. 6, 1927 - Oct. 8, 2012

It is with sadness and a deep sense of personal loss that I record the passing of longtime member, Rudy Budach.

Rudy and Janet joined CTCC in February of 1970, and they became active members, attending club events, car shows, and par­ades in their 1956 Buckskin Tan T-Bird.

Rudy's early involvement led him to serve CTCC on committees and in offices, including Vice-President for the 1973-1974 term. He was always a willing helper in club projects and events.

As one example of his mischievous nature, Rudy once used his ever-present cigar to orchestrate what I kindly refer to as an "illusion." The scene unfolded at a local car show, where Rudy knew his cigarette lighter was inoperative! As the interior judging team arrived to check his '56, Rudy started his magic act by refraining from puffing on his lighted stogie. He depressed the lighter, and with exquisite timing, waited a few seconds before placing the lighter in contact with his cigar. The sight of several puffs of smoke proved convincing, as the judges didn't record any point deductions!

Perhaps one of Rudy's proudest moments was when Monogram chose his stock '56 as the design T-Bird for their project to produce a 1956 Thunderbird model kit! Monogram personnel gathered literally hundreds of photos of the Buckskin Tan 'Bird. These photos were used to create a series of wooden forms, representing the sections to be scaled for use in the kit. The resultant wooden T-Bird model was in of itself a tribute to the skilled Monogram designers. Rudy and I were in the plant on several occasions to observe the project progress, and our last visit allowed us to see the assembly line of workers involved in the final stages of packaging the kits.

As an example of Rudy's resourcefulness, he negotiated with the Oakbrook Polo organization in order to arrange for the CTCC members to drive their 'Birds around the field after the 1st 'chucker.' I accompanied Rudy on his first meeting with Jorie Butler, and the dream soon became a reality. As each 'Bird circled the Polo Field, the announcer described the model year, etc., from a script pre­pared by each driver. If memory serves, there were several appearances following the very successful initial event. It was apparent that the Polo crowd appreciated the sight of our "classics!"

It was in 1974 when Rudy became a willing accomplice in what I termed The Great Ford License-Plate Heist. A small group of CTCC members planned a visit to the Chicago Auto Show - on the closing day of the exhibit. The premeditated action found us armed with pliers and screwdrivers, as we stealthily removed a number of the Ford " Better Idea" plates from the Ford display cars. Our raid was deemed a success, with little or no interference from Ford. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Eventually, Rudy decided to part with his '56, converting to a (Red) '02 Retro model. Next, a Smart Car appeared in the Budach garage! (The above photo was taken (by Liz Werth) at the Kresmery Poplar Grove Hangar Event in 2009.) Rudy made a large, black "key" for the car!

Rudy's joie de vivre was always in evidence. The CTCC Officers, Directors and membership express their deepest sympathy to Janet and her family as we share in their loss.
- Editor

                                  CLASSIC THUNDERBIRD CLUB OFCHICAGOLAND

BIRD-NEWS                                                -PAGE 3-                                           NOVEMBER 2012

Photo Caption- Rudy Budach's Buckskin Tan '56.

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