Harlan "Bud" P. O'Connor

March 16, 1927April 5, 2021

Harlan Paul (Bud) O'Connor, Jr. completed his job on earth on April 5, 2021. He was born in Indianapolis to Mary Louise and Harlan O'Connor on March 16, 1927. He was a 1949 graduate of the University of Notre Dame where he played euphonium in the marching band.

Bud was an entrepreneur, inventor, story teller and loved a travel adventure, all of which led him to be flying back to Indianapolis with a friend one night in 1952 when their small plane crash landed in a field in Crawfordsville. That experience motivated him to propose to, marry, have nine children, and spend the next 65 years with his wife Joan, the true love of his life.

Bud's life was full of love, fun, travel and many fine long lasting friendships. Joan and his sons Joseph and Gregory preceded Bud in death. He is survived and will be lovingly remembered by their children Catherine (Doug Hightshue), John (Jennifer), Janet Peavler, Matthew (Bif Ward), Jim (Cindy), Jean Monroe (Sam) and Paul, ten grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Our family is grateful to all of the friends and caregivers at Hoosier Village who helped make both our parents' later lives comfortable and happy, especially our friend Chris Davis with AseraCare Hospice.

Bud loved good music. He participated in choirs and singing groups throughout his life including the Columbians, various Catholic church choirs, the Classmates '45 and the Hoosier Village choir. He was a founding member of the Indianapolis Catholic Choir. We hope that you will celebrate Bud's life by singing a song that makes you smile and doing something kind for someone less fortunate. In addition, in lieu of flowers, contributions in Bud's memory may be made to Gibault Children's Services, The Little Sisters of the Poor or your favorite charity.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, April 16th at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church with calling one hour prior.

To share a memory please visit


16 April


9:30 am - 10:30 am

St. Alphonsus Liguori Catholic Church

1870 W. Oak Street
Zionsville, IN 46077

16 April

Mass of Christian Burial

10:30 am

St. Alphonsus Liguori Catholic Church

1870 W. Oak Street
Zionsville, IN 46077


Harlan "Bud" P. O'Connor

have a memory or condolence to add?

Kathleen OConnor

April 16, 2021

Dear Harlan “Bud” O’Connor Family, I am so sorry for your loss of your dear father, grand father and great grandfather. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. He is risen and joined with his beautiful family; dearly departed wife Joan and his parents Harlan and Mary Louise welcoming him into heaven. On this day he is also greeted by his brothers Richard and Edgar, one of whom passed away a year ago today, my father Edgar.

I am saddened for the loss of my Uncle Bud. He was a beloved family man and expressed a zest for life! Uncle Bud and Aunt Joan loved to talk about their loving family and their trips to the coast. One of his favorite traveled locations was Booth Bay in Maine. I remember Bud telling me how much he and his lovely wife Joan loved to see the tall ships come into the Harbor in Booth Bay. I lived in Maine and we enjoyed our connection to its stunning coast.

Another fond memory of Uncle Bud was when we shared our passion for music! Bud would express joy and pride regarding singing and performing. He was a founding member of the Indianpolis Catholic Choir and a member of the Hoosier Village Choir. On occasion when I could visit in person and on the phone we talked about our singing gigs and events. Within the last couple of years, Bud shared with me that he hoped someday we could write a song together.

Now Uncle Bud is singing with the Angels!
Kathleen O’Connor

Mike O’Connor

April 14, 2021

I am saddened to learn of Bud’s passing. He was a most vibrant man and got a lot out of life. He was also well-known for his sarcasm.
After our parents died many years ago Bud and Joan and Edgar and Mary Lou frequently showed up when we were having get-togethers. It was so greatly appreciated that they continued to be involved in the lives of their nieces and nephews.

Diane Schafer

April 9, 2021

Mr. O'Connor was a great man. Always friendly and so quick to help in any way. He will be missed. Please know his church family at St. Luke will pray for him as well as his family.

Marie Clare O'Connor

April 8, 2021

Sending love to all my cousins! So many good memories of times we'd all get together when we were kids, and our parents were so young, with so many of us! Fortunate to have more recent sweet memories too, of Aunt Joan and Uncle Bud when I was able to get back to Indy...My heart goes out to all of you. We were going through this last year, when Dad--Uncle Ed took his leave from this life...I love to imagine your Mom & Dad's reunion in Heaven, as well as the reunion of 3 brothers: Uncle Dick, Dad (Ed), and now your wonderful Dad, Uncle Bud: I bet he's already in Heaven's Choir...much love for all of you, and I will be with you in Spirit for the services on 4/16. Peace, marie

Carrie O'Connor

April 8, 2021

I never knew about Uncle Bud's plane crash. What a story!

I so loved getting to know Bud and Joan, as did my parents. One lasting memory I have of them is of the times they hosted Pat and me for dinner early in our marriage. They always had evening drinks and a bowl of mixed nuts to snack on. We loved that routine - so civilized!

Bud was also kind enough to gift us with an approximately 3’ tall grandfather clock. I believe it was an O’Connor family heirloom. It is front and center in our dining room.