Charles Buce here… This is my Dad’s story as I know it. I’m leaving a lot out and you might remember some parts differently. Not everyone got the same story for the same thing from him anyway. But, the standard short obituary wouldn’t do him justice.
Donald Lee Buce was born in Indianapolis on February 15, 1946 to Bernice (Gillis) Comfort and Vernon Buce. He grew up on the west side of Indianapolis. An area he kept returning to through his somewhat nomadic life. He went to Washington High School and worked at Link Belt like much of his mother’s family.
After Vernon, Bernice married Charles Ray Comfort. They had Kevin Comfort and Lisa Jackson and ended up on a farm outside of Mooresville Indiana.
He joined the Navy in February of 1963. Said he served on the kitty hawk and another ship. He was honorably discharged as an “FA E-2” on August 13 of 1965. He drove a truck and did a bunch of stuff. Spent time in Oklahoma with his father.
Mixed in with all that he married Darlene. Then she had Tony and Christina. I honestly don’t know much about that time period. I just know he drove a truck and was doing a bunch of other things after he left. At some point they lived in a house on Garden Avenue on Indy’s west side.
He ended up joining the circus where he met my mom, Carol. They were married soon after. I always heard the story of the elephant bridesmaid. Heard lots of stories. They worked at Tropicana in Florida. Lived in Detroit. Lived in California, Vegas, and more. Plus lots of traveling while working with the circus and the sideshows.
When my mom became pregnant with me they stopped all the traveling and he made Indianapolis home again. After a few different jobs he went from Oliver Trucking into Queens Group working on the dock. Over time became a Shipping Clerk and Chief Steward in his Paper worker’s Union. We ended up in the same house on Garden Avenue on the west side where we lived around 20 years.
After my parents divorced he moved to Florida where he met Rhonda and they married. They moved back to Indiana a few years later. Eventually settling in Lawrence on Indy’s north east side. They took guardianship of two of Rhonda’s grandchildren Christina and Erica and raised them for several years. Rhonda had some big dreams and had the family leave Lawrence for a farmhouse in Arkansas. But, it didn’t work out like planned.
A year or so later, my dad ended up in the hospital in a small Arkansas town. My wife Josi and I went to be with him. He was in rough shape but made a good recovery. While he was in the hospital Rhonda disappeared. So, he came back to Indianapolis and stayed with us in our house on Garden Avenue. Josi opened her heart and took great care of him while he was with us. I’m glad they were able to spend that time together. She made a huge positive impact on him in a short time. His face brightened every time he saw her after he moved into assisted living. He spent the next year in and out of the hospital while continuing his long battle with COPD.
On October 18th, 2019 he could no longer continue that fight and passed in his sleep.
He was preceded in death by his mother Bernice (Gillis) Comfort, father Vernon Buce, Step father Charles Ray Comfort, and Sister Lucy Mascoe.
He is survived by his sons Charles and Tony and daughter Christina. 8 Grandchildren, and 8 Great Grandchildren. His sister Lisa (Comfort) Jackson, her husband Frank, and their children and grandchildren. His Brother Kevin Comfort, his wife Melissa, and their children and grandchildren.
Donald's wishes to be cremated are being respectfully honored. Arrangements are being carried out by Jones Family Mortuary, Mooresville.
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