Peter Bugel

Born on December 12, 1944

Departed on January 14, 2019 and resided in Nashville, TN

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Peter Bugel 12/12/ 1944 – 1/14/2019 is the son of Lucille Peek and Harry Joseph Bugel, brother of Susan B. Incendio and uncle to Sara B. Lozano. Born in Indiana, Peter moved to Nashville, TN when his father took a job at the new VA Hospital. From family photographs and stories, Peter focused on music and school. Peter’s mom, Lucille died of Pancreatic Cancer in 1958. Joe, his father, remarried in March of 1960 to my mother Alice Martin Huffman.

Peter was 17 when I, Anne Harriette came along in the fall of 1961. Family lore says I was born on the night of his West End High School Senior production, class of 1962. My next memory of my big brother is of mom, dad driving us to Wake Forest, NC to see Peter in a production of Amal and the Night Visitors in which he played one of the 3 Wise Men. I am not sure which came next … enlisting to avoid being drafted in to Vietnam, I believe. At the time, I did not learn what really happened there. What I do remember is that soon after he came home, he took me on my first date to the Blue Hawaii Restaurant. We dressed up and he taught me how to use chopsticks. Attending the Boston Conservatory of Music came next where he studied piano and voice.

Las Vegas was the next stop where he lived 30 plus years. He made a living as a professional singer and dancer at the Star Dust Hotel as well as a professional vocal coach for many famous celebrity performers and he taught in the faculty of the Music Department of the University of Nevada. Peter divided his time between Las Vegas and Nashville, TN to actively participate in the care of our father until his death in early 2000s. Peter eventually relocated to Nashville to care for my mother until her death in 2014. His generosity of spirit, belief in family, his genuine kindness, and protecting my mother’s estate when she wouldn’t let others. I am forever grateful to my big brother for taking the lead in our mom’s care.

Peter kindness and generosity extended into the community as he invested time, talent, and creative genius to Nashville. He participated in an “Ole Men’s” club at the YMCA. Veteran’s Support Group at the VA. His energy was truly devoted to the thriving Ballroom Dance community. He was an active member participating weekly in classes, open dances and all-around support. Peter was the Registrar for the local amateur dance group (USA Dance) and served in that capacity even when he was feeling well. He continued to offer private and group voice lessons, professional vocal coaching, and playing piano at Lynn’s Christmas Party.

Peter was a private individual. Many did not know of his military service or the impact over his life time. Peter’s medical issues, stemming from his service in Vietnam, warranted the awarding of 100% Disability. In May of 2017 Peter’s overall health picture met criteria for hospice service. His decline was slow, yet graceful, with courage and dignity … always a positive outlook. The image I hold in my mind’s eye is that of a jelly fish moving beneath the surface, pulsing like a dancer, focused on the rhythm of the tide like a musician, gliding homeward bound. He died Monday evening, January 14, 2019. His heart just stopped.

He is survived by many friends, devoted care companion Judy Boyles, an extensive extended family and immediate family members: his sisters Susan Incendio and Anne Harriette Bugel and his niece Sara Lozano.

The family ask that in lieu of flowers, please support your local musicians and dance scene in Peter’s memory. What about taking music lessons, learn an instrument, attend the opera or a theater production or perhaps learn to Tango, Salsa, Fox Trot, Waltz, Swing, Zydeco … See ya on the dance floor.

The USA Dance this Sunday will be a Memorial Dance for Peter. The event is from 2 – 5 pm. See USA Dance for details.

18 Comments to Peter Bugel

  1. Diane Walls says:

    What a lovely eulogy for a life lived fully. Much love to you, Harriette.

  2. John Blackman says:

    Dear Susan and Anne,
    We will certainly miss Peter at Immanuel. What an interesting life Peter lived! Even though I grew up with Peter and Susan, there was a lot I did not know about Peter’s life. Thank you Anne for such a wonderful history. We will miss Peter, but at the same time we are thankful for his life and having known him.
    You will certainly be in my thoughts and prayers.
    John Blackman

  3. Ben O. Pruette says:

    A full life indeed! Much like his sisters!

  4. sandra edwards says:

    Thank you for such a beautiful and loving obit. I am a classmate (class of ’62) from West End High and appreciate your allowing me to look inside the life of such a sweet, kind, talented man. May you rest in peace, my friend, and on Wed., Feb.13, I will take my pie to go and think of you fondly.

  5. Glenn Koogler says:

    I am also a classmate of Peter and participant in a monthly West High School class of ’62 luncheon group that Peter regularly attended. I know he enjoyed the luncheons because many times he was present when he should have been home resting. He will be missed by everyone but I know he will not be forgotten.

  6. Andrea Pitkow says:

    Your words paint a picture of your brother in a tender, loving way, Harriette. May Peter’s memory be a blessing.

  7. sfh says:

    This gentle man was kind to all,
    his countenance so fine.
    Support to friends, his soul extends
    beyond his life’s design.
    His graciousness shall never cease;

    God grant him everlasting peace.

  8. Bette Mosley says:

    I will always be fascinated by the fact that if Peter was not involved in a conversation with someone he was humming a melody to himself. We sang together several years in choir class at West High. He was such a talented man who carried himself with dignity to the end. It will be a surreal experience to not having him at the end of the table at Ocharleys the next time our crew meets. Peter will be missed, but never forgotten. Blessings to all who loved him. I’m thankful that he and his love of music were a part of my high school days.

  9. Connie Wallace says:

    I too was a classmate of Peter. We met in the seventh grade–I loved attending sock hops at his home. He played at my wedding. We reunited while planning our 50th high school reunion, and I enjoyed our monthly luncheons. His talents–voice, piano and dance–were incredible. I will miss him but am comforted that he is at peace. My sympathies to all who loved him.

  10. George Atwood says:

    I to was a class mate of Peter. I’m sorry to say I didn’t know Peter very well in high school . I was his mother and fathers and later on Peter’s pharmacist. As I got to know Peter better I really appreciated his wit and our conversations when he would come into the pharmacy. I learned what generous and gentle loving man he was. I’m saddened by his death, but I know he is a magnificent addition to God’s choir. We who loved and cared about Peter will always remember him

  11. David Ogden says:

    Another classmate (Class of 1962) of Peter. Since joining the monthly “lunch bunch” I have develop friendships with classmates I didn’t know that well or hadn’t seen in years. Peter is a friendship I will miss….a void !!! As one can see from the many messages from his classmates…he will be missed. Such a part of our gatherings. Peter, all of us got so much from you…our gain. Thanks !!!! Your seat at the head of the table is yours forever !!

  12. nancy carol cates says:

    What a lovely tribute to Peter! I, too, was a classmate from the class of ’62, and know how important our monthly reunion lunches were to him. He was a fine friend and a gifted musician. Don’t you know that he and Mary Lou are cavorting happily in heaven together–at least when Peter isn’t leading the choir! You will be sorely missed, my friend!

  13. Beverly Bugel Manlapaz says:

    Thank you for your Lovely orbit about Peter He was really a very talented and kind person. We kept in touch over
    the years and spoke over the hone. My fondest memories of him were from childhood visits made by Peter
    with Joe and Lucille to Grandmother Bugel’s. I wanted to let you know that I will keep him along with you AND
    Susan in my prayers.

    Beverly Bugel Manlapaz ( Cousin)

  14. Catherine Gatewood-Keim says:

    I will miss my dear friend I got to know at HTCC. I looked forward each week to our lively conversations and our few moments alone just being in one another’s presence. He always quietly sang me a tune.

    I shall truly miss his profound inspiration insight in Adult Education each Sunday morning.

  15. Clint Hendrix says:

    So sorry to hear of Peter’s passing. This was a beautiful eulogy, and although I listened to him sing kareoke for years and only got to know him later in his life, I had no idea about most of his bio. A humble guy, indeed. I’ll miss his crooner songs and American standards.


    I am so very sorry to learn of Peter’s passing. He was my vocal coach when I did a sojourn in Las Vegas from 1996-98. He introduced me to one of my favorite arias, “Mon Coeur s’ouvre a ta voix” which still reminds me just how cathartic song is. He supported my singing and prepared me for auditions in Las Vegas and San Francisco.

    He was passionate, dedicated, and his wisdom about the voice walks with me to this day. I told him I didn’t want a career singing. He accepted it, somewhat disappointedly, and said, “That’s fine, but you are the type of person that–if you don’t find some way to sing throughout your life, if only for yourself–you will not be well.”

    Those words will walk with me the rest of my life, and have already lifted me out of dark times. I’m so sad, as I’m not sure he ever knew how profoundly he affected me. He is unforgettable.

  17. Lee B. says:

    I just learned today of Peter’s passing. After I returned home wounded from a tour in Vietnam I was fortunate to land a position with the 3rd Army Soldier’s Chorus at Fort Benning, GA, which is where I first met Peter. Kind, compassionate even-tempered and a truly gifted singer are traits that come to mind when remembering him. When our military service ended, as often happens, we all went our separate ways and went on with our lives (more schooling, finding a job, marriage, kids, etc.). It’s a shame we all didn’t stay in touch because we had a special bond very much like the bond I had with my rifle squad in Vietnam. Guess we’ll just have to wait until we all meet again across the great divide and then we can truly have a “heavenly chorus.” In the meantime I’m sure Peter is up there getting everything organized for our reunion. Peace to you brother and may God hold you close.

  18. Steve G. says:

    Hi All .. I was one of Peter’s fellow-servicemen from 1966 – 67 in the 3rd Army Chorus at Ft. Benning, Ga. One of the other commenters was an old friend from those days and informed me of Peter’s passing. His life was certainly very eventful. When I met Peter, I was just a kid with no education past high school .. and Peter impressed me, as he had already graduated from college I believe and was able to answer spot questions I might come up with while reading a book on our many long journeys as traveling singing-soldiers. We had more than a few philosophical chit-chats about various things and Peter always seemed at that time to have a certain depth that I lacked, so he may have helped to encourage me to greater learning. He was a good piano-player, a fellow-baritone and, as I recall, had perfect pitch !
    Many years after leaving the service, our musical experience was beneficial, as a small church in NH. needed someone to help with the music and I began building a Christian-Gospel repertoire (we’d actually done some of that in the Army back then). I also came to know Jesus Christ as Lord & Savior. The best thing I can now leave you all with is ,, I encourage you to do the same .. the best decision you can ever make, “God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, that whoever Believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal Life.” ~Jn.3:16 Lord Bless you all, sg.

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