Henry “Bud” Grady Morgan Jr.

Henry Grady “Bud “Morgan, age 86, passed away on Sunday, October 2, 2022. He was born in Birmingham, Alabama on November 8, 1935 to Henry and Genevieve (York) Morgan. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brothers Bill and Mack Daniel. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Sandie Morgan, his sister-in-law Laura, his brother John, and his sisters Mary Patricia (Homer E. Gill) and Terri.

Bud graduated in 1954 from McGill-Toolen High School in Mobile, Alabama. He joined the Marine Corps where he achieved the rank of sergeant. During his four years in the Marines, Bud was stationed in Hawaii where he trained in cryptography. He was then stationed in Korea where he both served as cryptographer on missions and taught cryptography to other marines.

After his military service Bud completed college and received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Mississippi Southern University. He continued his education at the University of Colorado where he was awarded a PhD in English and Philosophy

In 1971 Professor Morgan began his teaching career at Missouri Southern State College’s English Department.  He was faculty sponsor of the Afro-American society. He and colleague, Professor Henry Harder, received a Humanities grant to create the first international academic conference on the Dean of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes. That conference gave birth to the National Langston Hughes Society which annually publishes The Langston Hughes Review. MSSC’s English Department in collaboration with the local NAACP sponsored an annual tribute to Langston Hughes during February’s Black History Month. Bud additionally developed and taught courses in African American literature.

Bud served on the Faculty Senate, chaired the department’s Faculty Recruitment Committee and the American Literature Committee. He taught courses on the American novel and a Faulkner seminar. The seminar attracted high performing students. His dedication and work earned him the honor of Outstanding Faculty Teacher of a freshman class in 1986.

Community Service found a 16-year commitment in Bud. Motivated by his belief in the positive power of reading, he gave his talent and time to the Board of Joplin’s Neighborhood Adult Literacy Action organization.

Bud’s hobbies included fly fishing, camping, boating, cooking and modern Jazz. Bud played several wind instruments and formed a jazz band while still in high school. He played in a house band in Honolulu, Hawaii and across that state for the Marine Corps.

Sandie and Bud relaxed at Table Rock Lake, where Bud frequently cooked for friends. His homemade bread was a favorite. His love of fly fishing drew him to travel to favorite streams around the country. His favorite was Cataloochee Creek in North Carolina.

Henry Grady Morgan Jr. was a man of integrity, a dedicated career academic, a jazz aficionado, and someone who enjoyed life. Those of us lucky enough to have known him, sat at his table over good food and conversation, and be called his friend will miss him. Semper Fi.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made out to the Henry Bud Morgan Scholarship Fund or the Joplin Humane Society.

Memorial service will be held on Saturday, October 22nd, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. in Parker Mortuary Chapel.

Arrangements are under the special care of Parker Mortuary.

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