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Monday, March 27, 2023

G. Kenneth (Bud) Brashar

G. Kenneth (Bud) Brashar was born Aug. 10, 1924. He died May 20 in Tucson, Ariz.

Bud started first grade and graduated high school from McCurdy.

He went to work for Bond and Co. in the Valle Grande as a horse wrangler. He worked full-time for $1 a day. “Never worked so hard, learned so much and made so little,” he said.

The next year, he went to the New Mexico Military Institute.

Bud enlisted in the Army in 1943.

He separated from the Army to accept an appointment to the Naval Academy to be a pilot; however, he failed the eye test due to color blindness.

Bud was assigned to the 7th Fleet (Pacific) and shipped overseas. He discharged from the Navy in 1946.

Bud returned to Espanola to assist his father in the Espanola State Bank.

He later went to 1st National Bank of Denver, located at 17th and Stout, where he received additional education.

He returned to the Espanola Valley, where his career continued as a banker. During his lifetime, he saw many mergers and changes to the banking industry. There were many different banks in New Mexico and Colorado where he served as bank president and chairman of the board. He also worked for the FDIC monitoring various banks until they could be solvent.

In 1960, he was elected president of New Mexico Bankers Association, a position he considered to be an honor.

Bud retired many times, but was called back to banking by request for his expertise. He returned to banking because he loved banking, he loved people and he wasn’t ready to retire.

Bud was extremely active his whole life in community service: Boy Scouts, 32nd Degree Mason, Kiwanis, Rotary, Chambers of Commerce, Valley View Methodist Church and New Mexico Amigos. He was instrumental in the evolution of McCurdy school, development of the Espanola Hospital, including the transfer of the hospital to Presbyterian Hospital Services.

While in Pagosa Springs, he became president and CEO of the Mary Fisher Foundation.

Using his past experience with the Espanola Hospital foundation, he provided guidance for the formation of the current Pagosa Springs Medical Center.

His passion was hunting, fishing, camping, traveling and flying his Cessna 182 (Alaska, Mexico, Western U.S.). These activities carried on his entire life.

He had an encyclopedic memory of New Mexico and Colorado that would rival any history book. He had many stories to tell and he loved telling them. He was a numbers genius.

Bud’s love was his family. He married Phyllis Meager in Denver in 1946. They had three children, Linda, Clifton and Gary.

He married Barbara J. (Bardy)in 1986, creating a blended family.

His “tribe,” as he lovingly referred to it, are six children, 13 grandchildren and 24 great-grandchildren (plus one due in September).

Bud is survived by his wife, Barbara (Bardy), Bobby Watkins, Lyn Klein (Mike), Tony Thomson, Lynda and Gary (Lynn).

Internment will occur in Santa Fe National Cemetery June 30 at 11:15 a.m.

In remembrance of Bud, in lieu of flowers, the family suggests planting a tree or making a contribution to Pagosa Springs Medical Center.

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