August Grudda

August Grudda

Thursday, May 5th, 1927 - Monday, February 24th, 2020
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On February 24, 2020, August Junin Grudda, known as “Auggie” by many, went home to be with his Lord and Savior after 92 years walking this earth and encouraging whomever he met. He died peacefully at home, surrounded by his wife and children.

Funeral: 2:30 p.m. Friday, February 28, at Grace Covenant Church, 3402 Interstate 20 W #1543, Arlington. Interment: Moore Memorial Gardens, Arlington. Visitation: 6-8 p.m. Thursday, February 27, at Wade Family Funeral Home, 4140 W. Pioneer Parkway, Arlington.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Samaritan’s Purse at

Auggie was born to August and Harriet Grudda on May 5, 1927 in Emmitt, Michigan. As the youngest of three children, he grew up emulating his older brother, Dennis, and enjoying the protective nature of his older sister, Alice. He spent his early childhood on farms in the upper peninsula, with short summers and very long harsh winters, during the depression years. Although the economic and environmental hardships were challenging, his family provided a strong Christian heritage and hosted Bible classes in their home. He learned of Jesus’ love and sacrifice for him as a young child and later put his faith and trust in his Savior and was baptized at age 14. Later childhood brought a family move to the big city—Milwaukee, Wisconsin— until he left home to join the Marine Corps in the later part of WWII. Uncle Sam provided the opportunity to show him a new world, in Nagasaki, Japan, in the occupation forces after the nuclear bombs were dropped to end the war. Early exposure to the radiation significantly impacted his health in later years.

After discharge from the Marine Corps at the end of the war, he and his brother chose to attend Nyack Missionary Training Institute in New York. At Bible college, he met the love of his life, Thelma Gambrell, who had grown up only 100 miles away from his Milwaukee roots. They married June 17th, 1950, in Westmont, Illinois, and returned to Nyack for his last year of college. He graduated in June, 1951, with not only a diploma, but also a son, Wayne Allen. Auggie moved his young family back to familiar territory in Milwaukee, and he worked a variety of jobs, which eventually focused on honing his carpentry skills, and adding a daughter, Anita, to their family. In 1969 he moved his family to Arlington, Texas, for health benefits for Thelma, and better opportunities as a carpenter.

Throughout his youth, military years, Bible college, and years raising his family, Auggie’s love for Jesus, and studying the Bible continued to grow. Family values were strongly rooted in the local Bible-teaching church, participating in church leadership, mentoring young believers, and often using his carpentry skills on projects at church. In 1974 he provided leadership as the construction superintendent for Pantego Bible Church’s new worship center. Over 18 months, he organized and led teams of church volunteers in building the facility which eventually seated 800. As he continued carpentry, he also mentored his son, Wayne, and they eventually often worked as fellow carpenters throughout the DFW metroplex.

As Auggie entered retirement years, he was recruited as an instructor in the Tarrant County educational program for apprentice carpenters. He thoroughly enjoyed teaching not only basic carpentry, but also first aide, CPR, and specialized courses such as confined space construction. He also enjoyed continuing to work on many projects at their church home, Grace Covenant Church, including showing the children how to help lay the decorative pavers for the front church entrance. Volunteer work in summer VBS programs, and leading teams in building parade floats also filled his time.

As his family grew to add son-in-law Clovis Barnett in 1991, he also became a grandfather with the birth of Sarah Lynn in 1993. He was known for enjoying helping family and friends in home projects, and had a teacher’s heart to share his knowledge in any project. As Clovis, Anita, and Sarah moved around the country buying homes that needed updates, they thoroughly enjoyed his expertise and his funny jokes as he told them he enjoyed spending their money and making a mess. He loved explaining building tasks and teaching young Sarah how to take dimensions and make something cool like a ballet bar.

When asked what the secret was to his long marriage to Thelma, he always said it was daily time in prayer together. He loved talking about the importance of commitment and sacrifice in marriage, as he taught young carpenters, or spent time with men at church. Even as he battled cancer 10 years ago, and then his health declined in these last few years, he and Thelma continued their tradition of ending each day praying together.

He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Thelma, son-Wayne Grudda, daughter-Anita Barnett (Clovis Jr.), granddaughter Sarah Mighell (Weston), nephews and nieces and cousins.
Gone from this life, but living forever in the presence of Jesus.

Wade Family Funeral Home
(817) 274-9233
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Thursday, February 27th, 2020 | 6:00pm - 8:00pm
    Thursday, February 27th, 2020 6:00pm - 8:00pm
    Wade Family Funeral Home
    4140 W Pioneer Pkwy
    Arlington, TX 76013
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Friday, February 28th, 2020 | 2:30pm
    Friday, February 28th, 2020 2:30pm
    Grace Covenant Church
    3402 W. I-20
    ARLINGTON, TX 76017
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    Moore Memorial Gardens
    1219 North Davis Drive
    ARLINGTON, TX 76012
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Paul &Jan Jones Elizabeth, John, Katherine & Jack sent flowers to the family of August Grudda.
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Paul &Jan Jones Elizabeth, John, Katherine & Jack

Posted at 08:50am
Praying for peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your hearts. Love you!
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