Bud passed away peacefully May 17, 2015, at his home near Sedona, AZ, after the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. His devoted wife, Lee (Oleta), was at his bedside. He is also survived by three children, Kathleen To, Cheryl Matson Breen and Dale Matson, their spouses, two step-sons Cliff and Kevin Brandeburg and eight grandchildren.
Bud and Lee lived in and around the Riverbank/Oakdale area for many years. He was an outgoing, adventurous, spontaneous, unorthodox happy guy who almost always had a smile on his face. Some may recall his big red “Bud’s Barn” in Riverbank where many social events were held. For many years he was the owner/operator of A&A Auto Wrecking and Matson Motors in Riverbank and later Space In The Shade mobile home park in Waterford. He was a successful entrepreneur many times over, also including other wrecking yards in So. California, welding shops, a PIG FARM in Montana, a motel in Washington, two large mobile home/RV parks and more. He was a man of many passions, including being the 7th ranked driver in NASCAR (even after fudging about his age to begin while a minor!)
He went on to drive stock car races for 20 years. He was a small-plane pilot for decades, almost always having his own Cessna, the last of which he kept at the Oakdale Airport. He loved flying and he and Lee flew to many western states.
Bud was a lifetime musician—the drums being his instrument of choice. He was almost always in a band—be it Glen Miller-type music to Country to Jazz.
He was very proud of his military service--first as a Marine and later in the U.S. Army. Bud liked to help people. In his capacity of president of Parents Without Partners, he organized events taking the children of single parents up in his plane. He donated old cars to the auto shop programs of many local high schools, as well as hosted class field trips for the students.
The Riverbank (Calif.) News
June 10, 2015