John Dudd, 83

John Edward Dudd, age 83, of Three Rivers, passed away on December 20, 2013 surrounded by loving family. He was born May 6, 1930 in Three Rivers, the second son of Clarence Merton Dudd and Lillian Ruth (Shafer) Dudd. His early boyhood was spent on their farm on Corey Lake in Fabius Township as well as in Three Rivers. His mother, a Mayflower descendent, traces her family back to John and Priscilla (Mullins) Alden. He attended school in Three Rivers, beginning his lifelong interest in music in the marching band. He may have been the first Three Rivers student to attend the two week University of Michigan All-State program at the National Music Camp at Interlochen, MI. He was also an outstanding Boy Scout. In 1943, he received his Eagle Scout Award. While an active scout, he received a total of 44 merit badges and four palms. Later in life he returned to scouting as an adult, becoming especially active after retirement.

He attended the Georgia Military Academy in the tenth grade, where he participated on the swimming team, and placed fifth in the State of Georgia in the butterfly breast stroke. Later he continued to be active in swimming, teaching swimming and life guard training. In the summers of 1947 and 1948, he attended the National Music Camp. The second year he was awarded both outstanding musician and outstanding camper awards in the High School Boys division. He graduated from Three Rivers High School in 1948 and enrolled in the University of Michigan’s School of Music. There, he received many honors and awards. As an undergraduate, he was elected to Phi Eta Sigma and Pi Kappa Lambda. He received his bachelor’s degree in 1952 in music education.

When working as head of one of the National Music Camp’s waterfronts, he met Joan St. Denis (nee: Thomson) in 1951. They were married in 1953. John continued to receive awards as a graduate student. He was elected to Phi Kappa Phi and received the Oliver Ditson and Theodore Presser awards. He received a Master’s degree in Instrumental Music in 1954 and a M.A. in 1956. As an Air Force ROTC member, he received: The SAR award for outstanding leadership, was named distinguished military graduate and nominated to the Arnold Air Society. While in the ROTC he organized and directed an Air Force ROTC band. He joined the U.S. Air Force in 1956. While in pilot training, he organized and directed a drum and bugle corps.

In 1958 he returned to Ann Arbor to continue work on a PhD. He became a candidate in 1959, and was made a Rackham Special Fellow. While he was a graduate student, he taught in the Ann Arbor Schools and later, private clarinet. He went to work full time in 1960 in the U. of M. Admissions Office and later, the School of Music. In 1965, he became Director of Admissions and Financial Aids at the Interlochen Arts Academy first and held the same title at Northern Michigan University in 1975. In 1978, after completing his PhD at the U. of M., he became Chairman of the Community Division of the Hartt School of Music, and in 1981 he was the Director of Fine Arts at the Lovett School in Atlanta, GA. In 1984, he returned to public school teaching in Columbus, GA. He retired in 1997 and moved back to the family farm in Southwest Michigan in Three Rivers.

While in retirement, John pursued his hobbies and interests. He enjoyed playing clarinet, swimming, scouting and hunting. He joined the local Rotary and was nominated as a Paul Harris Fellow and as a Scouting Rotarian. He also received the council and the Silver Beaver awards in scouting. In addition, he continued a lifelong interest in genealogy and became a member of the Mayflower Society and the Alden Kindred. He was active in promoting conservation and belonged to both the St. Joseph and the Sturgis Historical Societies. He was a member of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War and was an avid student of that war.

John was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Harmon Alden Dudd.

He leaves to cherish his loving memory, his wife of 60 years, Joan Dudd, two sons, John E. (Jennifer) Dudd Jr., of Arlington, Texas, and Robert H. (Yukimi) Dudd, of Harbor Springs, MI.; Grandchildren, Jolise Ellen (Brandon) Kent, Grayson Vogel (Hannah) Dudd, Emily Robin Dudd, step-grandchildren, Nicole (Jonathan) Moore, Jack (Tara) Gieber, and Kristin (Jesus “Chuy”) Ortega. Great-grandchildren, Ellora Kent and Alden Dudd. Step-greats, Grant Coleman, Devin, Dillon and Carter Moore, Jack Edwin, Bentley Gieber and Miguel Ortega.

The family will receive friends from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, December 27th 2013 at the Hohner Funeral Home.

Memorial Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 28th, 2013 at the First Presbyterian Church with Rev. Brenda Deily officiating.

Donations may be directed to the boy Scouts of American or the First Presbyterian Church (music fund). Envelopes available at Hohner Funeral Home in care of arrangements. Online condolences may be left at

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