Palmetto - Funeral services will be held at St. Thomas Catholic Church for Marx Allen “Sonny” Budden 86, who passed away at his residence on January 4, 2021 surrounded by his loved ones.
Sonny was born on October 19, 1934 to Patrick Allen “Chuck” Budden and Rita (née Boudreaux) Budden. He was the second child born to Chuck and Rita. He was preceded in death by both of his parents and one sibling, Edith Mae Budden Wartelle, and a brother-in-law L.W. Allegood (Johnny Wright).
Survivors include his wife of 61 years, Eldine (né Savoie) Budden; two sons and their wives; Shawn (Jaime), Casey (Tisha); 5 grandchildren; Shelby Avila (Johnathan) , Hunter Budden, Mya Budden, Reagan Budden, and Aja Budden; three great-grandchildren; Ethan Caballero, Karson Caballero, and Lori-Anne Avila. Survivors also include his two sisters Laura Budden Allegood, Bertha Budden Reed, brother-in-law Kenny Reed, a brother, Guyton Budden, sister-in-law, Vernita Budden, a brother-in-law Phil Wartelle, and a host of nieces and nephews.
A lifelong resident of Palmetto, Louisiana, he was a graduate of Palmetto High. After graduation, he attended, Southwestern Louisiana Institute (present day University of Louisiana at Lafayette). He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education.
After completing his studies, he returned to Palmetto as a teacher at Palmetto High and Elementary for the next 22 years. After retiring from the St. Landry Parish School System, he worked for several years alongside his parents, wife and brother in his parent’s business, Budden’s Store in Palmetto. A desire to return to the classroom led him to teach several more years at Amy Bradford Ware and Acadiana Preparatory School.
Throughout his life he had an interest in politics and public service. In addition to being a volunteer fireman and fire chief he also served two separate stints as Mayor of Palmetto. His first administration ran from 1973 to 1981. The second from 2015 to the present. He ran for a position on the St. Landry Parish Police Jury in 1982 to fill a position vacated by James “Jimmy” Savage upon his death. He served on the parish police jury until 1987. He was elected to the St. Landry Parish School Board to serve as the district five representative in 1999. His tenure on the board included a term a board president. He served until 2010.
During his life, he was a member of several hunting clubs. For most of his adult life, he was a member of the Knights of Columbus, Most Rev. Jules B. Jeanmard Assembly, where he achieved the rank of fourth degree. He was always an active parishioner of St. Thomas Catholic Church in Palmetto. Always available to do what was needing to be done, he served as lecturer, usher, groundskeeper, and just about anything else short of pastor.
Sonny truly enjoyed people, especially spending time with family and friends. He treasured the years that he spent teaching in the classroom. He spoke often of those experiences, remembering those students and colleagues by name. He took his political responsibilities seriously. He faced the tough decisions head on and always considered helping the greatest number of people when making those decisions.
He loved traveling and seeing new places, especially visiting historical sites and national parks. Throughout his life he spent time enjoying many outdoor activities such a hunting, fishing, keeping a garden, and raising cattle.
A wake will be held on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, in the evening from 4:00-8:00 p.m. at the Lafond Ardoin Funeral Home in Opelousas, Louisiana. A Rosary Service and Knights of Columbus Service will be held at 6:00 p.m. in the funeral home.
Viewing will continue on Thursday morning from 9:00 -11:00 a.m. in the St. Thomas Catholic Church, 340 E. Railroad Street, in Palmetto, LA 71353. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. with Rite of Committal and interment following in the St. Thomas Catholic Church Cemetery.
Serving as Pallbearers are Guyton Budden, Kenny Reed, Lyles Budden , Felix Wartelle, Johnathan Avila, and Hunter Budden. Honorary Pallbearers are Phil Wartelle, Robert Savoie, Eddie Soileau, Ryan Reed, Robert Malone Jr., Michael Allen Budden, Glen Beard, Webb Wartelle , Jeff Budden, Ethan Caballero and Karson Caballero.
The epistles and psalms will be read by Michael Allen Budden. Scripture readings for the Mass will come from the book of Wisdom (3:1-9), Psalm 116, the second letter of Paul to the Corinthians (5:1, 6-10), the holy gospel according to John (14:1-6).Reflecting on the importance and impact of the Christian faith on Sonny’s life, the following hymns were selected for the Mass: ”How Great Thou Art’, “I Have Loved You”, “On Eagle’s Wings”, “One Bread”, One Body”, “”Be Not Afraid”, and “Peace in the Valley”. They will be performed by Matt Marcantel accompanied by Shawn Budden, Klein Johnson, and Jill Merkyl.
The family would like to extend special thanks to Hope Hospice especially Jena and Katie for their wonderful care and compassion given to Mr. Sonny.
Lafond-Ardoin Funeral Home of Opelousas is in charge of all arrangements.
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