Edward “Bud” John King

OAKLAND – Edward “Bud” John King was born on June 6, 1923 in Rome, Maine, to John and Jessie (Blaisdell) King.

Bud began working at a young age and spoke fondly of late nights spent selling popcorn on Main Street in Oakland. His strong work ethic, developed early, remained with him for the rest of his life.

In 1940, on a blind date, he met the love of his life, Josephine Thibeau. It must have been one hell of a date, as neither went on another with anyone besides each other. On Dec. 29, 1943, in Leesburg, Fla., Bud and Jo got married. After 74 years of marriage, Bud’s love for Jo was as strong as ever: he’d never introduce her as “his wife” but always as “his bride.”

Bud enlisted in the Army Air Corps and served in the Pacific Theater on Saipan during World War II. Upon his return, he managed Michaud’s Market in Oakland before eventually becoming owner and changing the name to Bud’s Food Center, where he worked for many years. While working, he and Jo also built their own house, which they finished in 1952. Built with plenty of large windows so that warm sunlight poured in, Bud spent countless mornings there drinking coffee, reading the newspaper, and reading historical nonfiction.

In 1957, Bud and Jo welcomed their daughter Dru into the world. Bud was active in many community organizations and events throughout the years, but the one that stands out the most is the annual Messalonskee Thanksgiving Dinner. Bud got the idea from working in the store, where he spoke to people who had no one to spend Thanksgiving with. Bud, along with Mike Marston, decided to host an event where the community could come together to share a good meal and good conversation. The meal now serves more than 1,500 people at Messalonskee High School. As recently as last year, Bud was there, making the rounds, chatting with attendees and volunteers. Bud was a generous, hardworking, and kind man, who exuded positivity and warmth. Even during his final days, when asked how he was doing, he insisted, with a smile, that he was “percolating.”

Bud was predeceased by his bride, Josephine King, his parents, John and Jessie King; and his brother, Paul King (wife Jean).

He is survived by his daughter, Dru Aslam (husband Sunny, who provided years of love and care to both Bud and Jo) of Belgrade; his grandson and apple of his eye, Jai Aslam of Raleigh, N.C. (partner Aneri Pattani of Cheshire, Conn.); step grandsons Sharif Aslam of Chesterville, Sunny Aslam, Jr., of Jamesville, N.Y., and Ali Aslam (wife Rebecca) of N. Grafton, Mass.; second daughter Connie Brassbridge of East Orland; niece Cindy Spurr (husband Tom) of Chuluota, Fla., nephew Paul King (wife Sue) of Lindley, N.Y.; cousin Doug Blaisdell (wife Roxanne) of Rome, cousin Roberta Hermans (husband Matthew) of Las Cruces, N.M.; brother-in-law Arthur Pinkham of Machiasport; and many beloved nieces and nephews. Bud also leaves behind dear friends Gus and Cookie Hayes, Tim and Rae Williams of Sidney, Craig and Pam Lancaster of Oakland, Lester and Peg Soucy of Waterville, Dave and Luce Hillman of Shelburne, Vt., Barbara DeCastro of Marshfield, Mass., Mike Marston of Oakland, and Stella Swett of Oakland.

We would like to thank Dr. Robert Stevens, the good folks at MaineGeneral Hospice (especially Lynda Carrier and Erika Pierce), most recent caregiver, Betty Ouellette, and those who came before her, who helped make Bud’s wish of remaining in his home until the end a reality. Additionally, our heartfelt thanks to Mike Perkins and Zig Streznewski for their willingness to lend a helping hand at only a moment’s notice.

Finally, to the fine women who supported Dru’s journey as primary caregiver through thick and thin and every step of the way: you are so loved! Brenda Berger, Cindy Clapperton, Cindy Spurr, Connie Brassbridge, Debra Mayberry, Dee Gillis, Dee Hunter, Denise Jaillet, Diana Wheelock, Dianne Melanson, Donna Goodrow, Gale Loveitt, Jan Jamrog, Jess LeFebvre, Kathy Hapworth, Kayla Haas, Linda Pawlick, Lori Abbott, LuAnne Cori, Mary-Anne LaMarre, Pam Lancaster, Rae Williams, Selina Scott, Sue Feather, Susan Maganti, and Valerie Paul.

Due to the pandemic, a graveside service for Bud and Jo will be held in the summer of 2021.

You are missed, Bud.

An online guestbook may be signed, and memories shared at http://www.familyfirstfuneralhomes.com

Arrangements are by Wheeler Funeral Home & Cremation Care, 26 Church St., Oakland.

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