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Kurt Philip DudtAugust 19, 1949 ~ October 18, 2017 (age 68)
Kurt Philip Dudt PhD, of Indiana, PA died Wednesday, October 18, 2017 at home.
He was born in Pittsburgh on August 19th 1949 to Philip and Charlotte Dudt. He was raised on a farm near Scenery Hill, Pennsylvania where the family raised beef cattle, poultry and had an orchard and garden. This early upbringing created an appreciation for rural life and throughout most of Kurt’s adult years he resided on a farm near Shelocta, Pa.
He was married to Deborah Valcheff on June 14, 1975 and they had 42 wonderful years together that included raising four children.
Kurt Dudt was a Vietnam War veteran and served in the United States Marine Corp with the Combined Action Program where he helped train South Vietnamese troops on counter terrorism activities and conducted patrols and ambushes in the highlands. He was a combat veteran and received an honorable discharge. He was also a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).
After leaving the Marines, Kurt used the GI Bill and graduated with a bachelors and master’s degree from Clarion University of Pennsylvania. He later received a PhD from the University of Pittsburgh in Educational Communications and Technology and became a faculty member at Bethany College in West Virginia and later at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). He was also a visiting professor at the University of Poona in Pune, India and had several other research and teaching assignments in Belize. Kurt taught at IUP for twenty nine years and served as the Chair of the Communication Media Department for twenty five years. He also chaired the Foundations of Education Department for seven years. At IUP, he was instrumental in helping establish the Master of Arts in Adult Education and Communication Technology and the PhD program in Communication and Instructional Technology. He was an active professional and had many professional presentations and academic articles. He was also founding editor of the Journal of Communication Media Studies.
Kurt had many outdoor interests including vegetable gardening and the propagating of roses. He had an extensive collection of different types of roses and was quick to give friends and family plants that he had started. In his adult life, he kept and exhibited a flock of Salmon Faverolles (a critically rare breed of chickens), frequently rode his horse, Ranger, rode motorcycles and restored a 1980 Chevrolet pickup truck. Other favorite activities included fly fishing, hunting and competitive rifle and pistol shooting. He also raised English Springer Spaniels for twenty eight years. He was a member and active in many conservation groups including; The American Livestock Breeds Conservatory, Allegheny Arboretum, American Poultry Association, Trout Unlimited, the Keystone Sportsman Club and Indiana Bow and Gun Club.
A believing Christian, Kurt was active in various churches in the Indiana community where he frequently taught Sunday school and bible studies. His final church home was at Harvest Anglican Church and he enjoyed the depth and richness of the ancient faith. As an Anglican, he served on the church vestry and the Diocese’s Biblical Literacy Task Force. Also, for 30 years, he was active in mission work in India where he supported native missionaries and over saw the creation of 39 small businesses that helped provide a living for uneducated Indian Christians. With his wife’s Deborah’s support, he additionally funded irrigation and water purification projects, had a water well drilled, donated funds that helped purchase land for a Christian compound and funded various medical emergencies. He served on the Board of Directors of two Christian Organizations in India: Grace and Peace Ministries and the Family Restoration Foundation.
Coming out of retirement, he accepted a call to the ministry and served as the Pastor of Curry Run Reformed Presbyterian Church in Shelocta, PA from 2015 to 2017.
Kurt is survived by his wife Deborah, two sons Mark and Eric and two married daughters, Gretchen Pish (William) and Brittany Wilcox (David).
Visitation will be at John A. Lefdahl Funeral Home in Indiana, PA on October 20, 2017 from 2 to 4 pm and 6 to 8 pm. Funeral Service will be at the Lefdahl funeral home on Saturday, October 21, 2017 at 1 pm with burial immediately afterwards at the Dudt cemetery, Indiana, PA. Pastor Jeffery Smead will officiate at the mass of Christian burial.