Thursday, July 01, 2010

Obituary: R. Bruce Orchard - Class of 1966

MADISON - R. Bruce Orchard, age 62, died on Tuesday, June 29, 2010, at the University of Wisconsin Hospital. He had suffered from leukemia for a year and a half. Bruce was a lifelong resident of Madison. He graduated from Central - University High School and the University of Wisconsin-Madison with bachelor's and master's degrees and advanced study in mathematics and computer science.

Bruce was employed at the Waisman Center for 15 years as a computer consultant, and then served as a senior consultant in computer information processing for the University of Wisconsin College of Engineering. On April 29, 2009, Bruce received a certificate of recognition on the occasion of receiving emeritus status following "a record of distinguished service" to the University.

Bruce was an active member of the University United Methodist Church throughout his life, where he served in many capacities.

During his life, Bruce's interests centered around the Madison lakes. This included swimming and sailing as a member of the Hoofers Club. Bruce was a longtime supporter of the University of Wisconsin Hockey Team. Bruce loved skating and he participated in pickup hockey games on Sunday evenings at the University of Wisconsin athletic shell. Bruce loved the outdoors and had always looked forward to his annual vacations at Pickerel Lake near St. Germain. Bruce also enjoyed time spent at the family farm near Muscoda which has been in the family since 1854. Most of all, Bruce cherished his family, he enjoyed interacting with even the youngest children.

Bruce is survived by his mother, Lorraine; sisters, Jean Van Pelt (Mark) of Duluth, Minn., Ann Orchard (Robert Keller) of Edina, Minn., as well as their children: John Van Pelt (fiancee, Cally Bartley) of Denver, Colo.; Stephen Van Pelt, Ithaca, N.Y.; Bryan Keller (Alice Moore) of Stamford, Conn., and their son, Jasper; Anne Keller Tanser (James) of Reigate, Surrey, United Kingdom.

Bruce was preceded in death by his father, Kenneth M. Orchard.

A memorial service will be held at CRESS FUNERAL HOME, 3610 Speedway Road on Saturday, July 3, 2010, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Frank Gaylord will preside. A visitation will be held at the funeral home on Saturday from 10 a.m. until the time of services. A private family burial of cremains will be held at Forest Hill Cemetery.

The family expresses gratitude to Dr. Mark Juckett and the staff at Meriter and the University of Wisconsin Hospitals for their compassionate and competent care.

The family suggests memorials in Bruce's honor for the Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center at 600 Highland Ave., Madison, WI 53705; the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society at 1311 Manaroneck Ave., White Plains, N.Y.; the University United Methodist Church at 1127 University Ave., Madison, WI 53715; or an organization of the donor's choice.

Cress Funeral and Cremation Service; 3610 Speedway Road;(608) 238-3434

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on July 1, 2010 (submitted by Michael Vahldieck, Class of 1968)

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