Leonard “Bud” Wilmot, 93, of Kennett Square, PA died February 2, 2020 at Crosslands Retirement Community where he had lived with his wife, Ella Georgia (Loud) Wilmot. Bud was born and raised in New Bedford MA, the only child of Leonard Sr. and Marion Foster (Wilkinson) Wilmot. Bud graduated from Bates College in 1948 and went on to earn a Master of Divinity at Andover Newton Seminary. He later received a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Bud served as the Minister of Christian Education at First Baptist Church of Fall River MA, Myers Park Baptist Church in Charlotte NC, and Calvary Baptist Church in Washington DC. His professional career culminated at the Educational Ministries of the American Baptist Churches in King of Prussia PA. There he edited curriculum resources for teaching nursery and kindergarten children which were used by churches of fourteen denominations in the US and Canada. While in this position he traveled coast to coast conducting workshops for teachers of young children. Bud loved being with young children, 3 and 4-year-olds in particular. In many ways he was similar to Fred Rogers in his recognition of the personhood of young children, including his own children. He was an early member of the North Carolina Kindergarten Association which worked to promote publicly funded kindergartens at a time when there were none in North Carolina or much of the South. As the Minister of Christian Education at Myers Park Baptist Church, he founded the ‘Through the Week School’ in 1955 and taught lay people how to work with young children. Many of them found this experience transforming personally and professionally. Throughout his life one of Bud’s greatest joys came from traveling. He would spend many hours researching and planning these trips. Bud and Ella took numerous cross-country car trips to visit national parks and historic locations in the US and overseas. He and Ella participated in nearly 60 Elderhostel (Road Scholar) trips throughout the US and abroad. Bud and Ella enjoyed their life together at Crosslands Retirement Community for nearly 27 years. Bud was an active member in the community and especially enjoyed his work in the library. But Bud really loved Longwood Gardens and was energized by his work as a volunteer docent for 25 years. Bud is survived by his wife of 69 years, Ella Georgia (Loud) Wilmot, his daughters Ruth Ella (William Warriner) of Brattleboro VT, Martha Ann (Abigail Littlefield) of Westminster West VT, and his granddaughter Rachael of Philadelphia PA. There will be a memorial service at Crosslands Retirement Community, Kennett Square PA at 2pm on February 29, 2020 in the William Penn Room. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to your local Planned Parenthood Office or the national office at 800-430-4907, www.plannedparenthood.org
. Or contributions can be made to Andover Newton Seminary. Attn: Development Office, 409 Prospect St, New Haven, CT 06511, www.andovernewton.yale.edu
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Published by the Southern Chester County from Feb. 21 to Feb. 27, 2020.