Virtus "Budd" Gale

  • Born: May 7, 1927
  • Died: August 6, 2016
  • Location: Adrian, Michigan

Anderson Funeral Home

3050 W Beecher Rd
Adrian, MI 49221
Tel. (517) 265-3312

Tribute & Message From The Family

Virtus "Budd" Gale died Saturday, aged 89. His life began in Detroit in 1927, took him far afield on a battleship in World War II, Miami Beach after the war as a portrait artist, into the depths of addiction, and to Adrian Michigan where his life began anew when he found sobriety that lasted the rest of his life. It was in Adrian Michigan, surrounded by family, that his life ended from the cumulative effects of multiple physical ailments.
His father was an auto factory man, a unionizer who braved riots and counter-union intimidation. According to one of Budd's recollections, his father once had to hide under a car from an angry mob outside a factory in Dearborn. His mother was a farm girl from the Keweenaw Peninsula.
Budd joined the Navy at age 17. When he returned to Michigan, he met Cecile from Tecumseh, Ontario, the love of his life. In 1959 they moved to Florida. Budd supported himself by painting portraits at Miami Beach hotels. Cecile and Budd would have six children. They relocated to Adrian. It is a great mystery of life why some people become sober while others do not, but Budd did.
He became an art teacher at Sienna Heights College and finished his own education. He made many lifelong friends at AA and Al Anon meetings, including the recently departed Chuck Jameson—his best friend. He ran and cycled for exercise with his wife Cecile—herself a marathoner. He loved his wife's cooking.
At the re-unveiling of Riverside Park in Adrian in 1995, the city commissioned him to create bas relief sculptures which still decorate the promenade.
He showed his artwork numerous times, including once at Sienna Heights when he received his degree in 1986, twice at the Toledo Art Museum in 1988 and 2008, and twice at the Adrian public library—including a two-man show in 2016 also featuring his youngest son. A painting of Budd's still hangs in the library.
In 2007, Budd celebrated his 80th birthday, and the family gathered, and his grandchildren numbered 16, none of whom had ever seen him inebriated.
Late in life, he sometimes told stories about his early years with his brother making visits to the farm where his mother came from in the Keweenaw. He described the Trap Rock River, picking blueberries, calmly milking cows.
He leaves behind his Wife of 60 years, Cecile, his five sons and one daughter. He also leaves behind 16 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren—all of whom only knew him as gentle, humbled and generous.
He is preceded in death by his brother Robert.
Cremation has taken place. Visitation will be held on Thursday, August 11, 2016, from 12:00 noon until time of Funeral Service at 1:00 p.m. at Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian with Minister Charles Stewart officiating. You may send condolences to the family at Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Lenawee. Envelopes are available at Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Much love and many prayers to the entire Gale family. Though I haven't seen you much over the past several years, you have been sorely missed; meetings just aren't the same without Bud and Cece, and I often find both of you in my thoughts; and I think this is the most wonderful obituary I have ever seen. You have captured his essence magnificently, and I'm sure he will be sorely missed by many. God Bless.

Posted by Diann Fox - Jackson, MI - Friend   August 18, 2016

I knew both Budd and his wife through my grandparents, John and Janice Long. Budd was such a sweet man. He will be missed.

Posted by Michelle Long-Robison - Altanta, GA   August 12, 2016

Cece, my deepest sympathies to you and your family. I know your journey over the last few years with Bud was similar to mine with Pat. I have reflected over the last year of the wonder of it all and today I only see God's grace. You an Bud had a wonderful journey together. You were very blessed.

Posted by Sharon Feeley - Toledo, OH - Friend   August 10, 2016

condolences to the Budd family and especially his wife, who, along with Budd contributed so much to the art community. Painting with Budd was so enlightening. Other memories are of seeing him at Cosby Gardens
in Toledo with his great friend Chuck Jameson and talking about having an art guild in Adrian, one of both men's hopes. He always made me feel special, as he did so many others.
Friend, Adrian, Mi. August 10, 2016

Posted by Marjorie Castle - Adrian, MI - Friend   August 10, 2016

Sending our thoughts and well wishes to the Gale family.

Posted by Mark Druckmiller - Saline, MI - Family Friend   August 10, 2016


Prayers to Cece and all of Budd's family, such a great man and friend! RIP Budd

Posted by Cindy Gutierrez - Adrian, MI - Friend   August 10, 2016


Dear Gale Family, our thoughts and prayers are with all of you for the loss of your Dad. We pray tha God's gentle peace is with you. Don & Jo Ann Palmer

Posted by Jo Ann Palmer - Adrian, MI - Friend   August 10, 2016

My thoughts and prayers are with you and the family, Cece. I wish I could be there tomorrow and hug you in person, but Carl is having surgery in Toledo. I'll be thinking of you. . . .

Posted by Kim McBride - Tecumseh, MI - Friend   August 10, 2016

Sending love and strength to the family. I'm grateful to have met Bud and his family.

Posted by Coleen Berger-Mori - Friend   August 09, 2016

My condolences to Budd's family, and his sweet wife...I have good memories of painting with Budd...He was a great teacher and friend. The world of Art will miss his creativity and gentleness....

Posted by Jill Shaffer - Adrian, MI - Friend   August 09, 2016

Family Album