A good man was lost yesterday. Louis Hudgings passed away yesterday, at the tender age of 98 years old. He was a 75 year Mason, having gone through his degrees right after serving in the Army Air Corps in WWII. He was a 33rd Degree Scottish Rite Mason, he served as the Grand Commander for the York Rite in Tennessee in 1975, Master of two different lodges and many more things that I can't think of right now.
This man, up until the day he died, was of sound and sharp mind. His handshake was as strong as mine. He buried two wives and had six girlfriends that I knew of. Whenever Bartlett Lodge had an open function, he brought at least three of his girlfriends with him. During my year as Master, he was my Chaplain and sat on my right hand during every meeting. He made sure I didn't mess up too bad while sitting in the East.
He was a holder of the Pin of Excellence and was Bartlett's lead ritual instructor up until recently. He always was exacting, yet constructive in his criticism when you messed up the ritual. One time, a brother was obligating an Entered Apprentice degree for the first time (He played the Master, the biggest part) and the most important part of the degree, delivering the oath the man swears to, this brother got nervous and none of the words came out in the right order. After that part, when we were returning to our seats, Brother Louie said, "I've never heard that obligation before." I just about fell over.
This picture is from Bartlett Lodge's birthday party for him the year I was Master. I had arranged for the Mayor to make a birthday proclamation and it was presented to him by a city alderman.
You will be missed, Brother, Mentor and Friend. I have no doubt that when you stand before the Great White Throne, you will hear those welcome words from Him, "Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord."