m. 6 JUL 1920
m. 31 December 1955
Facts and Events
Elwood C. Veregge was born 31 July 1922 in Stockton, San Joaquin County, California, the son of Roy Scott Veregge and his wife Grace Zeralda (Zent) Veregge. At an early age, Elwood became known as "Bud", a nick-name which he would use the rest of his life. He had one older sibling, his sister June Alberta Veregge, who was born just 16 months before him and pre-deceased him in 1990. Bud spent much of his childhood in nearby Pittsburg, Contra Costa County, California, where his father owned and operated the Pittsburg Sheet Metal Shop for many years.
EducationSan Jose State College, receiving his B.A. Degree in Radio Engineering. While at San Jose State, Bud was elected Captain of the Spartan Track Team, excelling in relays and in the high and low-hurdles. Bud’s love for track continued later in life, as he was a volunteer AAU Track Official for many years in Southern California during the 1970’s and 1980’s. Bud also attended graduate school at University of California, Berkeley, majoring in Electrical Engineering (Communications), and successfully completed management courses or programs at the University of Southern California (USC) School of Business, University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) Business Management, the National Management Association, the American Management Association and Harbridge House. Bud also worked for Hewlett-Packard Company for a short while, likely either as a summer job or coming out of High School before he entered the United States Marine Corps Reserves in September 1944. Bud was also on the 1943 Varsity basketball team at Cal Berkeley
Amateur RadioAt an early age, Bud became very interested in electronics and radio equipment. When Bud was about 13 years old, started toying with amateur radio equipment and two years later, on 3 August 1937, just after his 15th birthday, he was issued his first Amateur Radio Operator's License from the Federal Communications Commission (shown in picture at right). Amateur Radio transmissions were banned, and when he operated his Amateur Radio when he was stationed in Tsingtao, China. Amateur Radio Operators became known as "Ham" Operators, a moniker which Bud enjoyed and relished.
During those days, Ham Radio Operators communicated primarily by using Morse Code (also known as "CW" for "continuous wave"), which Bud became proficient with for many years. Demonstrating a proficiency in Morse code was for many years a requirement to obtain an amateur license to transmit on frequencies below 30 MHz. When Ham Radio operators communicate with each other, they send "QSL Cards" to each other to document the date, time and band frequency that the contact took place. These QSL Cards are typically collected and kept to prove these contacts and help to document the number of countries that each Ham Radio Operator has "worked" or communicated with. Bud's first two QSL cards are shown in the photo on the left. He worked hard for several years to achieve his "Extra Class" License and achieved DXCC "Honor Roll" status early in his Amateur Radio work. Over the years, Bud worked many different communications frequencies (or "Bands"), and worked many different contries/contacts on several bands: (209 Countries on 160 meters, 373 Countries on Mixed Bands and 335 Contries on CW).
During his service with the Marines, in 1946 when Bud was stationed in San Diego, California, he was one of the original founding members of the San Diego DX Club, one of the oldest and best known DX clubs in the United States. At the time of Bud's passing in June, 2013, he was the last surviving original founding member of the club.
At the outbreak of World War II, in 1942, Bud volunteered to join the United States Marine Corps Reserve and continued his studies while attending the University of California, Berkeley, where he majored in Electrical Engineering (Communications). Bud served in the Marines for 10 years and 7 months, moving up in rank from Private to Captain, and was stationed during his military career at Camp Pendleton,in Oceanside, California (First Marine Division, 1st Tank Battalion); Ft. Bliss, Texas/New Mexico (Officers Guided Missile/Antiaircraft Artillery School); U.S. Naval Ordnance Test Station, China Lake, California; and Tsingtao, China.
Significant events in his military career include:
After his military service, Bud went onto a successful career in Aerospace Engineering/Missile and Satellite systems with Lockheed Missile and Space Company, Litton Industries Guidance and Control Division, Electronic Specialty Company and Interstate Electronics Corporation, where he worked in several key program management roles for each company during his Aerospace career.
At Litton Industries Guidance and Control Division, Bud served as LN-12C (RF-4B) Program Manager and was assigned full responsibility for a multi-million dollar fixed price development/production program involving the delivery of inertial navigation systems with carrier alignment capability. He received customer and Litton general management commendations for management and product performance.
While at Lockheed, Bud served as Engineering Department Laboratory Manager. His department was responsible for the successful design, fabrication and development phase for the Satellite and Polaris Missile Systems programs. He also directed technical activities of 250 engineering personal in the research and development department and received many commendations for product design, quality and "on-schedule" deliveries from his Program Directors.
Bud served as the ALM-60 Program Manager at Electronic Specialty Company and had management responsibility over the ECM/AGE program which before his tenure was in excess of a year behind schedule. The entire product was redesigned and put into total production within six months. Sixty fully qualified (Mil-T-21200) production units were delivered "on schedule" to negotiated contract schedules and final costs came in under the projected management budget.
At Interstate Electronics Corporation, Bud served as the Assistant to the General Manager and was the Program Manager of a computerized automatic test equipment program and also Program Manager of C-5A MADAR products program during the qualification test and early production phases being produced for Lockheed's Southern Star Division in Georgia.
During the Aerospace decline in the 1970’s, Bud formed his own consulting company, "Performance Consultants" and later obtained his Real Estate Broker’s License and started his own Commercial Real Estate Company, “Business Specialists”, selling commercial property and small businesses in Southern California. He later re-joined the Aerospace Industry, working his last 8 years in Hughes Aircraft Company’s Missile Systems Division, in Hawthorne, California, where he retired in 1987. Afterwards, he re-located to Gardnerville, Nevada, near Lake Tahoe, where he always wanted to live.
Bud Veregge was a life-long member of the Republican Party. He believed in smaller and limited government, less government intervention and regulation, free-enterprise, lower taxes and the right to own legal firearms. He frequently wrote legislators in state and national government regarding his opinion on key issues and received responses from many current and former politicians, thanking him for expressing his views. Bud frequently contributed financial support to the organizations that he aligned with, as well as many charitable causes throughout his life. He was also a contributor of political editorials to the local Nevada newspapers after retiring and moving to Gardnerville, Nevada.
Marriages/FamilyBud was married twice; first, to Mildred Harriet Irwin in 1944; and second to Rachel Carolyn Smith, in 1955; both ended in amicable divorce. Mrs. Helen Hall, a widow in Gardnerville, and Bud and Helen looked after and cared for each other the last years of their lives, attending services at the Carson Valley United Methodist Church, and were regular members of the Carson Valley Senior's Center. In 2007, Bud and Helen had a joint-birthday celebration at the Carson Valley United Methodist Church for Bud's 85th and Helen's 80th birthdays, with many of their friends and relatives in attendance, including Bud's two sons, Jim and Jon. After suffering from a prolonged bout with emphysema for several years, Helen predeceased Bud late in 2012. In late May, 2013, Bud was taken to the Carson Valley Medical Center in critical condition. His condition worsened and on June 1, 2013, Bud Veregge passed away peacefully with his son Jim by his side. Bud cherished his independence (he lived alone and was still driving up until the last few weeks of his life), was a proud American, a proud Marine, a proud Republican, was proud of his children, and lived life in the way that he wanted to the very end.
During his life, Bud had friendships that he cherished in life. One of his good friends and co-workers at Lockheed Missile and Space Division, Lawrence "Larry" Daley passed away in 1990, and his passing had a profound impact on Bud's life. Another life-long friend of Bud's was Donald "Don" Greenwood (1922-2013), who went to school and graduated with Bud in 1940 from Pittsburg High School in Pittsburgh, California. They also shared the passion for electronics and amateur radio; they both achieved "expert" ratings in the operation of their Amateur Radios, and kept in touch with each other regularly, frequently communicating via their radios during several evenings during the week. Don was born just 5 weeks before Bud, and in an eerie coincidence, passed away suddently on June 2, 2013, the day after, or several hours after Bud's passing. Bud and Don are no-doubt continuing their friendship in heaven.
Another co-worker that Bud became good friends with during his life was Robert A. "Bob" Westlund (1919-1989). Bud and Bob worked together at Lockheed Missle and Space Division in the Aerospace Industry and Bob helped Bud get hired and was a true and loyal friend.
A memorial service was held for Bud at the Carson Valley United Methodist Church in Gardnerville, Nevada on Saturday, July 20, 2013 attended by friends and family, officiated by Pastor Pete Nelson. It included a traditional Marine color-guard, 21-gun salute, flag-folding ceremony and was concluded by the playing of "taps" in a fitting military send-off. In addition, a slide-show presentation of Bud's life was given by Bud's son Jim, detailing many of the key highlights of Bud's life, his ancestry, childhood and college life, military career, aerospace and real estate careers, family details and life in Gardnerville, Nevada after his retirement were included. After the memorial service, Bud's ashes were spread on the Nevada side of Lake Tahoe, per his wishes.