Dr. Arthur Roy Buntin, 94, of Aberdeen, passed away Wednesday, June 10, 2020, at Avera St. Luke’s Hospital in Aberdeen.
Arthur’s wishes were to be cremated and his memorial service will be 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, June 16, 2020, at Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ, 431 West Melgaard Road, Aberdeen, with Pastor Blair Kirkpatrick officiating.
Interment will take place at a later date. His ashes will rest next to his wife’s urn at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis, SD.
Schriver’s Memorial Mortuary and Crematory, 414 5th Avenue NW, Aberdeen, is in charge of arrangements.
No visitation will be held before the service.
Family and friends may sign Arthur’s online guestbook and also view his service via the live stream service link at www.schriversmemorial.com.
Arthur Roy Buntin was born in Deer Lodge, Montana on September 6, 1925, the son of Milwaukee railroad telegrapher Eddie R. Buntin and Grace Evelyn Sinclair. He was raised, attended school, and graduated high school in Missoula, Montana.
Arthur then entered the United States Army and served his country in the European Theatre during WWII. In Germany, he advanced to Staff Sergeant in the Field Artillery administrative headquarters and earned several Central European medals during the occupation of Germany. After receiving his Honorable Discharge, Arthur returned to Montana, where he furthered his education and graduated from the University of Montana, and for several years he taught in Montana high schools. He achieved a PhD of history from the University of Washington in 1961.
Arthur would meet his wife, Elva Deanne “Dee” Burnett while teaching at Boise State College. They married August 19, 1962. After a honeymoon at the world’s fair in Seattle, they moved to Aberdeen, SD, where he was a Professor at Northern State University in the social science and history departments from 1962-1993. Arthur and Dee raised two daughters and shared 50 years of marriage before she passed away on April 20, 2011. He continued to make Aberdeen his home until the time of his death.
Dr. Buntin was an active member of Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ for sixty years, he authored two church histories, the 100th anniversary history in 1989-90 and the 125th anniversary history covering the years 1990-2015. He was an advisor for 30 years to Circle K, and served twice as President of the Kiwanis Club of Aberdeen. Dr. Buntin was active on the Aberdeen/Brown County Landmarks Commission, Westerners, the Salvation Army, and a contributor to a great many other charitable organizations. In 2014, the Landmarks Commission published his book, “Moccasin and Foote Creeks: A Brown County Saga of Challenge and Response 1880s-2013”. Arthur was a prolific writer and researcher, the variety and scope of presentations, pamphlets and booklets he authored testify to his interest in local history in areas of theater and film, parks and landscape, historic sites and architecture, exploration and settlement. Dr. Buntin was a recipient of several awards for his writings on the preservation of the history of the Dakota Territory, including the Dakota History Conference’s Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Preservation of the History of South Dakotas and Dakota Territory (1993); The American Association of State and Local History recognition (1994); The Preserve South Dakota Achievement award for Volunteer Service (2003); and The Robinson Memorial Award from the South Dakota State Historical Society for excellence in interpretation (2007).
He is survived by daughters, Laurie (Kraig) Keller and Julie Hohle (Tai Dent); granddaughter, Ayla Folwarski; and grandsons: Trevor (Valeria) Keller, Lukas Keller and Cody Hohle.
Arthur is preceded in death by his wife, Dee; and his parents, Eddie and Grace.
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