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Bud Fischer 1945-2016


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#1 iceberg210

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 04:12 PM

We lost a legend in the industry, and in life this past week.

From the family:
It is with heavy hearts we share the news of the passing of a great man. 22 February 1945 - 30 December 2016 - we love you and will miss you.
https://www.youtube....o&feature=share
Erik Berg
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#2 iceberg210

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 04:13 PM

There's not much I can say to in any way explain what you meant to so many people Bud. I was so lucky to see you in your role to others as a father, grandfather, husband etc. You were a role model in every sense.

I'm very fortunate to in my life known you as a mentor, and most importantly as a dear friend. One whom I learned a lot about the industry from but most importantly a lot about life.
You were an incredible man whom I am forever thankful for knowing.

RIP with a scotch, and know you touched so many, and are dearly missed.
Erik Berg
Bald Eagle Lifts: Defying Gravity
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#3 liftmech

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 06:29 PM

I never met Bud in person. However, I've worked on his systems, learned from his experiences, and bantered with him here on the forums. He contributed much to our industry and will be sorely missed. I'm raising a glass to his memory. Godspeed, Bud.
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#4 towertop

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 05:50 AM

Bud Fischer may you R.I.P.
You were a friend, mentor and help when needed, no matter when. It was a pleasure to know you and Matt can carry on.
What now?

#5 Kelly

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 08:04 AM

I had the great pleasure of meeting Bud back in the Yan days, if memory serves me correctly about 1975. A quick tour of the Carson City plant and the beginning ideas of the Base 10 control panel. Huge success by the way. As a few of us have said we had many email exchanges about life and an occasional SORT forum topic.
Bud had this low-key humor that many of us got, some not – this is from one of his last posts in the Off Topic Forum…
Member question and topic: Where is Emax?
Bud (over a series of replies in October 2016 and no doubt very sick): Thanks for concern… I am laying low…
Topic link: http://www.skilifts....showtopic=10719
He also had some very good quotes relating to preventative maintenance.
One of his last posts: George Bernard Shaw – Both optimists and pessimists contribute to society, the optimists invented the airplane, the pessimists the parachute.
On his profile page: Georges Pompidou - There are three roads to ruin; women, gambling and technicians. The most pleasant is with women, the quickest is with gambling, but the surest is with technicians.
Quote topic: http://www.skilifts....80

Bud was deluged by safety signs and annoyed by the overreach of just-trained “safety inspectors” wanting a new sign by every single machine and he started the very appropriate topic Saved By The Sign. His first post was a comment toward excessive sign use but in the last sentence was this classic statement from 2006 - “if anything deserves a warning message, it's cell phones”
Saved by the Sign: http://www.skilifts....topic=3743&st=0

We will see Bud many times in the future…a greater explanation is obviously needed. As SORT maintenance forums matured around the year 2005, forum administrators established a separate electrical forum with just two subforum classifications. Bud came up with the idea of 15 different subforums, those are what we see today.
Subforum list: http://www.skilifts....hp?showforum=82

Bud you will be missed.
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#6 Aussierob

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 10:22 AM

RIP Bud. Thanks for quite a few conversations and a lot of learning.
Rob
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#7 RibStaThiok

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 01:29 PM

Never had the pleasure of meeting him in person, only thru posts on here, but I quickly grew to like the man. He may have seemed like a pain in the ass sometimes, but that is why I think so many liked him. Stubborn, rough, grouchy, but funny and overall a great human being. It looks like physically he had been thru quite a bit in life, I don't know what health issues he had and what he faced in life, but I am grateful for the fun replies and topics I got to see on here from him. Wish I could have bought him a drink and had the chance to sit down in person to chat.
Ryan

#8 iceberg210

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 05:50 PM

View PostRibStaThiok, on 03 January 2017 - 01:29 PM, said:

Wish I could have bought him a drink

I would guarantee it would have been single malt Scotch :P

He always loved to tell a story about how he was at a dinner with muckety mucks from some ski area in Utah and his I think 5 year old dollar at the time was with them. When they asked her what she wanted to drink she responded "I'll have a coke and my dad will have a Scotch"
From a young age he had them taught well ;)

By the way if anyone has any particular stories feel free to share! And I'll make sure to send them along to the family too, they asked if folks had any on the forum. He was quite the character and there's no end to the stories. I'll share a few more if folks are interested but don't want to dominate the conversation.

Also does anyone have a picture of his "If you can read this it's upside down" tower board that said so either way you put it.
Erik Berg
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#9 NHskier13

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 05:54 PM

View PostRibStaThiok, on 03 January 2017 - 01:29 PM, said:

Never had the pleasure of meeting him in person, only thru posts on here, but I quickly grew to like the man. He may have seemed like a pain in the ass sometimes, but that is why I think so many liked him. Stubborn, rough, grouchy, but funny and overall a great human being. It looks like physically he had been thru quite a bit in life, I don't know what health issues he had and what he faced in life, but I am grateful for the fun replies and topics I got to see on here from him. Wish I could have bought him a drink and had the chance to sit down in person to chat.

We wouldn't want it any other way.
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#10 Kicking Horse

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 01:50 PM

Bud,

Thanks for all the help you have given me and the rest of the Skilifts.org family over the years.

Thank you for your services and may you RIP. :)
Jeff

#11 boardski

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 06:56 PM

It has been great to share the same Birthday with such a dynamic, knowledgeable individual. Even though I never met Bud in person, I felt like I knew him through his contributions to this forum. He will be missed.

#12 RibStaThiok

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 08:59 PM

Share those stories as time allows, Erik, that is one of the best ways of honoring him I think.
Ryan

#13 Aussierob

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 10:29 PM

View Posticeberg210, on 03 January 2017 - 05:50 PM, said:

I would guarantee it would have been single malt Scotch :P

He always loved to tell a story about how he was at a dinner with muckety mucks from some ski area in Utah and his I think 5 year old dollar at the time was with them. When they asked her what she wanted to drink she responded "I'll have a coke and my dad will have a Scotch"
From a young age he had them taught well ;)

By the way if anyone has any particular stories feel free to share! And I'll make sure to send them along to the family too, they asked if folks had any on the forum. He was quite the character and there's no end to the stories. I'll share a few more if folks are interested but don't want to dominate the conversation.

Also does anyone have a picture of his "If you can read this it's upside down" tower board that said so either way you put it.

Only have a "smile if you're high" one.
Rob
Ray's Rule for Precision - Measure with a micrometer, mark with chalk, cut with an axe.

#14 cjb

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 09:52 PM

As a new lift mechanic supervisor I ordered some spare base 10 cards and parts from Bud. The box of parts was delivered to the rental shop at our mountain which served as receiving because of its location. I drove over to get it, set it on the tailgate of the truck and opened it right in front of dozens of members of the general public. I quickly closed up the box and drove away. He had used pages ripped from penthouse and huslter as packaging material, many, many pages.


RIP Bud the industry lost one of its true characters.

#15 SkiBachelor

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 10:28 AM

RIP Bud. You were a ski industry legend. While I never had the opportunity to meet you, you were very inspirational in my endeavors in the ski industry.
- Cameron

#16 BudsDaughter

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Posted 20 January 2017 - 09:04 AM

Thank you all for your kind thoughts and the memories of Dad, keep those stories coming! He took me with him so often when I was a child, not just dinners, but machine rooms and ski area maintenance shops everywhere. I met most of his associates before my 10th birthday.

Once when I was probably about 7 or 8 we were in a machine room (I think it was at North Star) in the middle of the night, during the season and I fell asleep on the floor leaning up against the big ass diesel motor. He started it. I came straight up off the floor and used some colorful language to describe my distress. He laughed for quite sometime about it. Even family members were not safe from his antics.
Tami

This post has been edited by BudsDaughter: 20 January 2017 - 09:05 AM


#17 2milehi

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Posted 20 January 2017 - 01:18 PM

Thanks for chiming in - proof again that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

My condolences to you for the loss of your father.
Anything is possible when you don't understand what you are talking about.

#18 Nate214

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Posted 30 January 2017 - 11:50 AM

RIP Bud. I'm glad to have the pleasure to work with the stuff he built. Definitely a major contributor to the industry. Will miss learning from you on here.

#19 yosemitemtb

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Posted 06 February 2017 - 08:31 AM

I'm sorry to hear of his passing. RIP Bud.

#20 BudsDaughter

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Posted 02 March 2017 - 08:33 PM

We had been waiting to post an “industry” obituary for Dad to see what SAM did with what we sent them. As they, in their infinite desk jockey wisdom decided to spend about one minute cobbling (you know how Dad felt about cobbling) together a few poorly constructed sentences, I decided to do right by Dad. He would be insulted and embarrassed by what was linked with his name there, I know he would not be with this. I will post the text for those that don’t want to use the drop box link to the original layout.

Drop Box Full File Link
https://www.dropbox....%20PDF.pdf?dl=0






Ernest Max (Bud) Fischer III 2/22/1945 – 12/30/2016
How do you sum up a man like Bud in a few paragraphs? I can’t, you can’t, we can’t – WE, that was Bud, always there to lend a hand when needed. Hell, let’s grab a good single malt and give this a try.

Born in Tempe, AZ (yeah it was weird for him too) and raised in South Orange, NJ, Bud started his antics early in life – including an incident in the basement of his home on Connett Place that involved homemade rocket fuel and his Mom’s kitchen table….
A tour with the Army in Vietnam (MOS – SATCOM, surprise right?) saw the man he was to become start to emerge.

Upon returning home, Bud spent some time in MO, where he met Roxy Lea Vaughn. On May 21st, 1976, Bud married his best friend and began the best 40 years of his life. Three kids (Tami, Matt & Sami) kept things interesting & fun (what kid doesn’t want a go-kart track in the back yard?). Bud shared his family with the industry he loved, many of you reading this know us and remember a feisty wife, a precocious little blonde girl that would order a scotch on the rocks for her Dad in a restaurant, a boy that could take apart anything (and put it back together) and a red head that scared everybody just a little bit. Bud shared his life and his love of it with everyone.

In 1974, Bud joined Lift Engineering and started his epic career in the industry. In his own words, he “Designed and managed the fabrication of all L/E ski lift electrical controls.” Yeah, you could say that. Bud never took enough credit for the work he did (but would blast a newbie inspector to someplace that Google® couldn’t find them), let’s be honest, he created the Yan Base 10 Drive Control System. The first drive specifically designed for a ski lift, many of the original 200 fixed grip systems are still in operation today throughout the world. If you like the idea of lift operators NOT having access to the ACTUAL control system, thank Bud, the two button switch to reduce operator error was his idea. He was part of pioneering of the ski industry in the United States, and his designs will live on forever (Matt has all of his original blue prints from 1978 – Current). His years at L/E were many, and brought so many wonderful people into his life, we can’t name all of you here, but if you got the “Christmas Card” (Carl Stuart & Bud in work boots & tool belts) that shall forever live in infamy, you know who you are. I am not sure that Jan ever forgave them for that…

In 1992 Bud decided that Brian Head Resort in Utah was the place to continue his adventure. Again, in his own words he was “Involved in all technical aspects of ski resort operations. 40+ years of experience in ski lift controls. I spend most of my time developing new solutions to old problems typically encountered in winter sports facilities. Another part of my time is spent in support of my past designs dating back to 1978”. It was here that he perfected his ability to “fix sh*t over the phone”. He always made himself available to those in the industry that were willing to learn. He taught many a man, many things over the years. He always hoped that more than anything he taught them to care about what they were doing as much as he did. He was really proud of his designs and the people that implemented them. In 1985-86 his daughter Tami was soldering boards with him at L/E and (as was customary) he had her sign them with her initials so that if one ever came back he would know who made it. In 2014 he got a board in for refurbish & upgrade (note the 24 years of flawless service) that had her initials on it, he was a proud father. He upgraded the board to his current design, but left the initials of his 8 year daughter on the board right next to his. His son Matt and his daughter Sami came of age at Brian Head, his daughter Tami was married there. Matt worked under Bud for several years at Brian Head, learning, perfecting, and following in his Father’s footsteps. Those that knew Bud know that VERY few people could keep up with him on anything technical, Matt always could. Bud would proudly tell anyone that would listen that Matt was better at diagnosing a problem with a lift than he was. Matt continues Bud’s support of Yan Base 10 systems as he expands his own career in the industry at Sunrise Park Resort in AZ. His daughter Sami was called upon to pull (a LOT of) wire during a remodel of one of the lodges at Brian Head (size was a factor; she was about 12). Upon emerging from a cramped hole under a deck, someone (non-informed) demanded to know who she was and what she was doing there. Being Bud’s kid she promptly answered, “I am Bud’s daughter, he is an as**ole for making me do this“. His grandchildren brought a new joy to his life, and only they could get away with calling him “Poppi”. Being a doting grandfather to Keisha, Joshua, Evelyn and Erika was a special perk he enjoyed more than he shared. Bud’s wife Roxy spent many years at Brian Head as well, but when Bud had a health issue in 2002 she decided it was best for her to be at home.

When Bud became a double amputee below the knee and lost 8 of 10 fingers to a rare disorder, Brian Head Resort stood beside him and the family and supported them unconditionally. Faced with adversity that would fell a lesser man, Bud made jokes. “Did you lose weight in the hospital? Yeah, I am 2 feet lighter.” He redesigned his tools to work with shorter fingers, left his prosthetics in strange places, impressed new employees with his ability to stand in the snow for hours in nothing but his signature Converse® tennis shoes, and moved on. When Bud faced lung cancer in 2010, Brian Head stood beside him and made sure he was able to continue to do what he loved….at 10,000 feet. Nothing ever held him back.

Many of Bud’s innovative designs for the industry were developed and field tested at Brian Head, rope proximity sensors that could not be defeated by a lift operator, safety gates that actually worked and many more. He had an amazing capacity to turn his ideas into reality. Bud always saw the completed project first and worked backwards. He would eventually put them down on paper or in electronic format so that the rest of us mere mortals could see his vision too.
Bud was very proud to work at Brian Head Resort for over 24 years, and we are proud to call the staff family. The love and support that they have shown us is immeasurable and humbling.

Bud’s influence in the ski industry was wide spread and profound. You would be hard pressed to find a resort in the United States that has not benefitted from his experience and expertise over the years. These few words will never encompass the man, the husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend that we all loved. So put on some Dylan, grab a scotch and toast the memory of a man that touched us all.


“I am not a perfectionist. I am a completionist.” - Bud



Quotes from friends -
You will be missed by many my friend. Thank you for being so eager to share you wisdom and knowledge. The world was a much more tolerable place with you in it. Your quick wit and obscure outlook shed light when ever there was doubt. You were a great inspiration to all those that came in contact with you, and your absence will leave a great void to be filled by no other. Thank you Bud, for your life and dedication to the lift industry. You were a true pioneer and will never be forgotten. Much love and respect. Rest well my friend. Always, James Analla

Wow. One of my heroes is gone. My heart is breaking. Now who am I gonna call for answers when I'm up to my ass in alligators? The man could literally "fix shit" over the telephone! Bud Fischer "May Angels on Ariels in leather and chrome swoop down from Heaven to carry you home." I'll see you in that "Old Lift Maintenance Shop" in the sky.
Eric Geaslin

Bud was truly a creative mind, always slightly controversial, and such the prankster! I fondly remember the 'electric ski poles' holiday card some 31 years ago. But the more meaningful memories are visiting Bud occasionally at Brianhead, in the 'mad scientist' lab. Bud was upset that I used that term, but for me it was a compliment to his dogged curiosity and his fantastic skills to dream, draw, and fabricate his visions. He will truly be missed. RIP Bud. - Joe Gmuender

From Jan:
Bud was my friend. We worked together for over 40 years. He started as an employee, and within 15 years, he became a sub-contractor. The last project we did together was in 2016.
Bud learned electrical basics while in the service in Viet Nam. He was super bright and eager to learn.
Working 40 hour weeks from am. to 5 pm. was not Bud's forte. He preferred 60-hour weeks, but on his schedule. He cooperated well with electrical engineers and other technicians working for the company. He developed a particularly strong friendship with Andre Nowacki, Carl Stuart and me.
Bud always followed the development of technologies and products. He knew well the components he chose to work with. He was an outstanding craftsman. His drawings and bill of materials were always perfect. He took particular pride in assembling components and packaging them in good-looking and practical assemblies. I have never met a more meticulous builder of prototype assemblies.
We will all miss Bud as a friend and outstanding professional.


Bud was one of the best men that I have ever known. If I had only paid more attention over the last 25 years to what this great man was trying to teach me. The shop now has a void that can never be filled. I will miss your friendship, guidance and most of all your yelling "God Dammit" as you threw what ever you were working on across the room - Mac Hatch

“A couple years later, still at Mount Snow, we were working late on a Base 10 that was not running at all well. called Bud for some help. much discussion he suggested that we start the lift and put the phone out so he could hear how it sounded. remember starting the lift and then stopping it and we could hear Bud screaming out of the phone. "Stop, Stop!". said we had a bad SCR and then he talked us through finding the bad one. "Just disconnect each of the SCR's and when it doesn't sound worse, you have found the bad one." - Dan Etman

There's not much I can say to in any way explain what you meant to so many people. I was so lucky to see you in your role to others as a father, grandfather, husband etc. You were a role model in every sense.
I'm very fortunate to in my life known you as a mentor, and most importantly as dear friend. One whom I learned a lot about the industry from but most importantly a lot about life. You were an incredible man whom I am forever thankful for knowing. RIP with a scotch, and know you touched so many, and are dearly missed.— Erik Berg














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