Donald M. Busch, 74, of Parkersburg

Parkersburg businessman Donald M. Busch, 74, died Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012, at Camden Clark Medical Center, Memorial Campus, Parkersburg, following an extended illness.

Mr. Busch was born June 2, 1937 at Big Bend, Calhoun County, the youngest son of the late Ray Maxwell (Max) and Theresa Lynch Busch.

He was a 1956 graduate of Calhoun County High School and, in recent years, enjoyed hosting high school class gatherings at his home. At a young age, he developed a fondness and respect for the outdoors and enjoyed hunting and fishing.

For many years, he was a competitive coon hunter, having won numerous awards, and enjoyed buying and trading firearms. While still in high school, he began working with the family excavating business, R.M. Busch Excavating, and, before long, became known for his skill in operating excavating equipment.

After receiving an honorable discharge from the U.S. Army, he returned to West Virginia to join his father and brother as a heavy equipment operator with Max Busch, Inc. In conjunction with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, he created many of West Virginia's beautiful lakes, ponds, and recreational resorts and personally constructed more than 400 farm ponds across West Virginia. In the early 1970's, his career focus shifted from excavation to crane operation and upon retirement of his father in 1978, he and his brother formed Busch Crane Rental, Inc. and operated Grove hydraulic cranes throughout West Virginia and Ohio until his retirement in 1988.

He was a long time member of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 132 AFL-CIO and was very proud of his work of erecting many structures throughout the region along with his excavation work. He never forgot any of the projects and had a story about each. He was a 50 year member of the Mt. Olivet Lodge #3, AF & AM, a 32nd degree member of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, and the Nemesis Temple of the Shrine where he had been a member of the Director's Staff. He enjoyed traveling, visiting flea markets and auctions, and, in recent years, was never happier than when he was hosting cookouts and karaoke for friends and family at his home.

He was a licensed private pilot and enjoyed flying his Cessna.

He is survived by his wife of 19 years, Martha (Mace) Busch; two sons and their wives, Gregory T. and Mary Beth (Stanley) Busch of Elizabeth, and Mansfield, Ohio, Michael Shawn and Tara (Mace) Busch of Parkersburg, W.Va.; a step son, Tony L. Lopez of Parkersburg; a brother and his wife, Glenn K. and Barbara (Reed) Busch of Lubeck; a sister and her husband, L. Kathryn (Katie) and Carroll Slider of Parkersburg; four grandchildren, Nicholas A. and his wife, Mary K. (Lott) Busch of Parkersburg, Emily Grace Busch of Cross Lanes, W.Va., Michaelyn S. Busch of Parkersburg, and Mace M. Busch of Parkersburg; a great-grandson, Gregory Maxwell (Max) Busch of Parkersburg; several nieces and nephews, and special friends, James, Charlie, and Tom Bennett, Bill, Mary Bell, and Elisa Kale.

Funeral services will be noon Saturday at Vaughan Funeral Home, Parkersburg, with Pastors Loyd Winans and Dave Cumpston officiating. Entombment will follow in the Chapel of Peace, Sunset Memory Gardens, with masonic graveside honors rendered by Mt. Olivet Lodge #3, AF & AM and military rites by American Legion Parkersburg Post 15.

Friends may call at the Vaughan Funeral Home, Parkersburg, from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Friday and from 9 a.m. until the time of the services on Saturday.

Memorials may be made to the Shriners Burns Hospital.