EAST PEORIA - Jeremy Jay "Jerry" Budd, 81, of Venice, Fla., formerly of East Peoria, Ill., died at 4:24 a.m. Sunday, May 11, 2014, at his residence in Florida.
He was born on April 27, 1933, in Lacon, Ill., to Carl and Florence Deneen Budd.
He is survived by his wife, Chris, and their son, Jeremy M. (Shelly) Budd of East Peoria, Ill.; daughter, Chris (Steve) Nielson of San Diego, Calif.; and three brothers, Melvin (Justine) Budd of Lacon, Ill., Ronald (Darlene) Budd of Lincoln, Ill., and Vernon (Charline) Budd of Lacon, Ill.
Jay graduated from the University of Dubuque, Iowa, in 1955. After graduation, he was drafted into the U.S. Navy and served two years aboard the aircraft carrier, Wasp. While aboard the Wasp, he toured the Pacific. When the carrier was sent around the horn of South America to dry dock in Boston, he was able to go ashore at several ports in South America. Though he was able to travel much of the world, he couldn't wait to get home.
He started selling Cadillacs for Travis Cadillac/Pontiac in Peoria, Ill., in 1960. He stayed with the agency through several ownerships, retiring from Neil Norton Cadillac in 1995. All through his working years, he was a top Cadillac salesman. One year, he was second in the nation in Cadillac sales.
Jay accepted Jesus as savior in college. He loved the Lord and tried to live his life for Him. He was a member of Grace Presbyterian Church in Peoria, Ill., and served as an elder for many years.
Jay was a wonderful, loving husband and father. He and Chris were married for 59 years.
He enjoyed traveling, playing golf, hiking and canoeing. His real love was golf and he would often be found on the course with his friends. Jay loved people and would stop to talk to anyone. To him, a stranger was just a friend he hadn't met. Jay was always smiling and upbeat and seemed to have a song in his heart.
A funeral service will be at 11 a.m. today, May 16, 2014, at Deiters Funeral Home & Crematory in Washington. The Rev. Kevin Richmond will officiate. Visitation will be one hour prior to service at the funeral home. Burial will be at Fondulac Cemetery in East Peoria.
Memorials may be made to Grace Presbyterian Church in Peoria or Youth for Christ.
Jay's memorial website is available at www.deitersfuneralhome.com, where condolences may also be sent to the family.