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Obituaries
 
Philip 'Joe' Bunge, 78, Brown County

Lifelong Brown County resident, Philip Richards “Joe” Bunge, passed away suddenly Dec. 4, 2013. Philip spent his last day outdoors, as he loved to do, working to clear a fallen tree from his property just west of Helmsburg. A problem with his heart resulted in a trip to the hospital, yet God called Philip home before the recommended surgery could be performed.

Philip will be remembered as a humble man, who consistently and generously gave his time and talent to his family, his community and his church. The third child of Chester and Hannah (Richards) Bunge, Philip was born June 17, 1935, in Helmsburg. He enjoyed playing basketball for the Fighting Tigers, and graduated with the Helmsburg High School class of 1953. A double-date with friends turned into a two-year courtship, and he married his high school sweetheart, Guylia L. Smith, Jan. 2, 1955. Together they built a new home for themselves, started a family and began their own construction business. Their union lasted a short 58 years, but stands as a testament to a marriage based on love, trust and Christian principle.

It is estimated that Philip built more than 100 homes during his career, with most of them being in Brown County and the surrounding area, but he also built several houses in Florida, too, where he and Guylia enjoyed spending the winter months. Philip was skilled at all aspects of the home-building process, and many times illustrated his vision of the work to be done by simply sketching it out on a 2x4 at the jobsite. Of the many accomplishments attributed to this quiet man, one of his most visible was the construction of the beautiful Unity Baptist Church. Beginning in spring 1998, Philip worked six days a week alongside his fellow church members to build the new building on ground across the road from the original church. Through the generosity of several, and the combined manpower of many, “This Church Called Unity” was completed in the spring of 2000, totally debt-free. Philip’s 55-year membership at Unity Baptist Church involved serving as deacon and trustee, as well as sexton for the church cemetery.

Philip Bunge let his light shine in communities other than his own, as he answered the call to help rebuild in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. August 2013 found Philip assisting with tasks such as pouring footers and remodeling the group homes of the developmentally handicapped residents of Rainbow Acres in Arizona.

Philip and Guylia enthusiastically traveled throughout all 50 states, and ventured to Alaska five times. Camping in the back of their Ford truck and cooking over an open fire as they made their way across the USA are counted as some of the best times the Bunges enjoyed through the years. While not one to spend endless hours in front of the television, Philip nonetheless never intended to miss an IU basketball game, “Jeopardy” or giving his nightly greeting to the co-host of “Wheel of Fortune” with a friendly "Well, Hello, Vanna!" Philip realized his longtime dream of owning and refurbishing an antique auto with the purchase of a Ford Model A several years ago, and he fired up this car and happily cut a couple laps around the barn lot just days before his passing.

Among those who will miss Philip the most are his family left behind to remember and celebrate his life: wife Guylia; daughter, Loretta Kay (David) Woodrum of Morgantown; son, David Michael Bunge and daughter, Robin Lee (Tim) Nolin, both of Brown County. Also sharing the loss are his sister, Mary Jo (Mike) Renihan of Martinsville; one brother, John A. (Ann) Bunge of Indianapolis; two sisters-in-law: Wanda Bunge of Greenwood and Patricia Bunge of Cocoa, Fla.; brother-in-law, David (Dorothy) Isley of Lubbock, Texas; eight grandchildren: Amanda, Adam, Austin, Adrian, Andrew, Hannah, Bahia and Zion; and 10 great-grandchildren, Clay, Abby, Alyssa, Luci, Logan, Bryce, Cooper, Ryder, Rocson and Claire.

Philip was preceded in death by his parents, Chester and Hannah (Richards) Bunge; two sisters, Dorothy Jean Young and Sue Lynn Isley; and two brothers, Kenny Bunge and Frank M. Bunge.

Friends and family were invited to share hugs and memories during visitation at Unity Baptist Church Tuesday, Dec. 10 from 3 to 8 p.m. The funeral service will take place at the church Wednesday, Dec. 11 at 10:30 a.m. The church is at 7361 Spearsville Road in Brown County. The Revs. John Parsley, Jeff Tryon and Lee Snyder together will conduct the funeral and burial service, with interment at Unity Baptist Church Cemetery. Meredith-Clark Funeral Home Cremation & Personalization Center in Morgantown has been entrusted with arrangements.

Memorial contributions can be made in honor of Philip Bunge to the Unity Baptist Church Memorial Fund, 7361 Spearsville Road, Morgantown, IN, 46160.

Expressions of caring and kindness can be made to the Bunge family at www.meredith-clark.com.

 

  • September 4
    Farmers market in Bean Blossom
    4 to 7 p.m. St. David's Episcopal Church, 11 State Road 45 at 135 North, Bean Blossom
  • September 4
    Bingo
    6 p.m. Fruitdale Fire Station, 5200 State Road 135 North, Bean Blossom
  • September 4
    "Rounding Third" at the Playhouse
    7:30 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 5
    Euchre
    6 p.m. Sycamore Valley Center, 746 Memorial Drive (fairgrounds)
  • September 5
    BCHS class of 2005 reunion slated
    3 to 6 p.m., 8 p.m. Deer Run Park; Salt Creek Golf Retreat, 2359 State Road 46 East
  • September 5
    "Rounding Third" at the Playhouse
    7:30 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 6
    Read to dogs at the library
    2 to 3:30 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 6
    'Ant-Man' at the Playhouse
    4 p.m., 7 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 7
    'Ant-Man' at the Playhouse
    4 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 7
    Government offices CLOSED
  • September 8
    Euchre
    6 p.m. Sycamore Valley Center, 746 Memorial Drive (fairgrounds)
  • September 8
    Open 12-step meeting in New Bellsville area
    8 p.m. Harmony Baptist Church, 3999 Mt. Liberty Road, New Bellesville
  • September 8
    Peaceful Valley Heritage meeting
    6:30 p.m. BCCF, 209 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 8
    CSCD Roads, Security commissions
    6 p.m., 7:30 p.m. CSCD Office, 8377 Cordry Drive, CSLOA Clubhouse, 8751 Nineveh Road
  • September 8
    Retired teachers
    noon Hotel Nashville, 245 N. Jefferson St.
  • September 8
    Nashville Parking & Public Facilities
    6 p.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • September 9
    Nashville Town Council
    6 p.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • September 10
    'Ant-Man' at the Playhouse
    7 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 10
    Nashville Arts & Entertainment Commission
    10 a.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • September 11
    "Rounding Third" at the Playhouse
    7:30 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 12
    Free community breakfast at Sprunica church
    8 to 10 a.m. Sprunica Baptist Church, 3902 Sprunica Road
  • September 12
    Bible camp planned
    8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church, 5802 Old Settlers Road behind Brownie's restaurant
  • September 12
    "Rounding Third" at the Playhouse
    7:30 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 12
    Beer and live music at inn
    12:30 to 4 p.m. Story Inn, 6404 State Road 135 South
  • September 12
    Live birds of prey at fundraiser
    5 to 9 p.m. Brown County State Park, 1450 State Road 46 East (north entrance)
  • September 12
    Concert, dinner for emergency services
    7 p.m., 8 p.m. to midnight Mike's Dance Barn, 2277 State Road 46 West
  • September 13
    'Ant-Man' at the Playhouse
    4 p.m., 7 p.m. BC Playhouse, 70 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 14
    Beeline beekeepers club
    7 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 15
    Open 12-step meeting in New Bellsville area
    8 p.m. Harmony Baptist Church, 3999 Mt. Liberty Road, New Bellesville
  • September 17
    WRAPS
    7 to 9 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 18
    BucCornEar Festival fundraiser returns
    4 to 8 p.m. JTFD, 4831 Helmsburg Road, Helmsburg
  • September 18
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    7:30 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 19
    BucCornEar Festival fundraiser returns
    8 a.m. to 8 p.m. JTFD, 4831 Helmsburg Road, Helmsburg
  • September 19
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    6 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 20
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    2 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 26
    CCC reunion slated at state park
    10:30 a.m. Brown County State Park, 1450 State Road 46 East (north entrance)
  • September 28
    American history DVD to play at library
    1 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 28
    American history DVD to play at library
    1 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • October 4
    Read to a dog at the library
    2 to 3:30 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane