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Obituary: Bruce Wheeler, 79, Bardstown

Bruce Wheeler, 79, of Bardstown, passed away on Monday, May 2, 2022, peacefully at his home surrounded by his family. He was born in Louisville on June 6, 1942 to Joseph Kent Wheeler of Bardstown and Mary Evangeline Wheeler of Peonia.


He graduated from St. Brigid’s Catholic Elementary School and graduated in 1960 from St. Xavier’s Secondary School. As a teenager, he worked part-time for his dad, who was chief engineer at St. Anthony’s Hospital in Louisville. He enjoyed working with his dad and learning how to do plumbing and electrical repairs. After graduating from high school, his father offered him a full-time job as an assistant engineer at St. Anthony’s Hospital, where he worked for 38 years.

He served in the Kentucky National Guard for nine years and was a member of the Whiskey City Cruisers. He enjoyed weekly Wednesday dinners at BJ’s in Bardstown with the Cruisers. In 2011, Bruce worked at his sister Marilyn’s house in Louisville to renovate her house. He was assisted by his son Scott and his nephew, David Wheeler. The renovation took two years. After the renovation was completed, his sister hired him to work full-time as a caretaker of her property.

He enjoyed hunting and fishing with his father and his brother Joseph. With his wife Judy and grandson Cody, he enjoyed relaxing under the large shade tree in their front yard with their beloved dog Shadow Bear and neighbor Phil.

He was predeceased by his loving parents, Joseph Kent and Mary Evangeline Wheeler; his in-laws, Millard Hutchins Sr. and Anna Lola Hutchins; and his adored niece, Kimberly Kent Wheeler, who passed away on February 20, 2021.

He is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 52 years, Judy Hutchins Wheeler; one son, Jeremy Scott Wheeler (Amy); one sister, Mary Charlene Browder (Fred); his sister Marilyn Kent Velde; one brother, Joseph Wheeler (Linda 2002); one grandson, Cody Thomas Wheeler. Cody looks like his father and his papaya. Cody and Papaw were very close, and they loved taking long road trips, fishing together, and having lunch in Bardstown; four nieces and nephews; Joan Matthews (Steve), Steven Wheeler, David Wheeler and Lisa Browder; and two close friends, Phil Fassler and Elise Fassler.

Funeral Mass is at 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 10, 2022 at the Proto-Cathedral of St. Joseph’s Basilica with interment in the churchyard with Reverend Joseph Batcheldor and Deacon Steve Heil officiating.

Visitation will be held from 12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Monday, May 9, 2022 and from 9:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 at Barlow Funeral Home with a prayer service at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, May 9, 2022.

Donations may be made in his memory to the American Cancer Society, 900 E Main St., Louisville, KY 40206, and Hospice of Nelson County, 711 McDowell Blvd, Bardstown, KY 40004.

Barlow Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.


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