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Bube, Harrison surveyor, dies


June 30, 2010
Harrison County Surveyor Thomas O. Bube died Saturday morning, June 26, 2010, at Floyd Memorial Hospital and Health Services in New Albany. He was 70.

Bube, who was midway through his third consecutive term as surveyor, was found unconscious Friday morning at his desk in his office on the first floor of the Harrison County Court House in Corydon.

U.S. Postal Service mail carrier Frances Byrne, who was delivering mail throughout the courthouse at about 10 a.m., saw Bube and initially thought he may have been dozing at his desk. She mentioned that possibility to Marion Wallace, whose Veterans Service office is near the surveyor's.

Wallace said he was about ready to leave the courthouse and stopped by Bube's office since he knew he was there. (As the surveyor, Bube was "in and out a lot," Wallace said.)

When he saw Bube, Wallace knew he wasn't sleeping.

"I called his name and stuff," he said, then called 911. "The ambulance was there in about three minutes."

Bube was taken to Harrison County Hospital in Corydon and later in the day was transferred to Floyd Memorial Hospital, where he died shortly after 5 a.m. Saturday.

"We laughed and we joked a lot," Wallace said. "We're sure going to miss him."

A native of Harrison County, Bube was born Jan. 31, 1940. He was a 1959 graduate of Corydon Central High School, served five years in the Army and retired from General Electric Co. in 1995. He and his wife of 50 years, the former Mary Durbin, operated the Lunch Box in New Middletown for six years.

"He cared a lot about Harrison County," Scott Fluhr, chairman of the county's central Republican Party, said.

One thing Fluhr said he would remember most about Bube is his sense of humor.

"He always had something funny to say," he said.

At the Palmyra Fish Fry on Saturday, where the Republican Party had a booth, officials acknowledged Bube's passing by draping a chair with a black sheet and placing his surveyor campaign signs next to it.

Bube had run for his party's nomination for sheriff in May. He finished second in the three-way race.

"I would bet he was the hardest working surveyor in the state of Indiana," Fluhr said, adding that larger counties in the state have a staff to do a lot of the work while smaller counties contract the work that needs to be done.

Bube, on the other hand, "put many miles on his red pickup truck driving all over the county — in the field, as he always said — to do survey work," which included helping settle property line disputes, he said.

Fluhr said Bube also "cared about his wife, the county and New Middletown."

Visitation was Monday and yesterday (Tuesday) and will continue today after 9 a.m. at Beanblossom-Cesar Funeral Home in Corydon.

The funeral will be today at 11 a.m. at the funeral home with burial in Bethesda Cemetery near Elizabeth.

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