Until We Meet Again,Ted

We said goodbye to the Old Man.  Teddy Kudrick was laid to rest, but not until countless friends, loved ones and fans gathered in Media, Delaware County Tuesday night and Wednesday to pay their last respects to this father, husband, friend, showman, leader and hard-working American.20171025_092213

Ted Kudrick worked as an engineer on a tug boat and was Captain of Duffy String Band. A top hat he wore on New Years Day and at parades around the region graced a room where mourners gathered in Media, Delaware County to say farewell.  We kidded Teddy in recent years about being the “Old Man.”  His dad, Henry Kunzig was the original Old Man of the Duffy String Band family, but Teddy had gone on to earn the nickname.   He paraded for half a century, was inducted in 2005 into the Philadelphia Mummers String Band Association Hall of Fame, and was Captain for 32 years at the time of his passing.  He deserved the respect that was meant by “Old Man”, but Teddy was not old.  He was just 52 when he died last week.

Duffy has always been a favorite band of many Mummers.  It’s been a leader in opening up the parade to women and remains one of the most accessible and pleasing bands of Mummery.  They haven’t always placed high in the competition, but they always have heart.  They love the tradition of a people parade, and care more about making people smile.

20171025_092150 Teddy had a smile, one that never left him from the time he was a baby.

Throughout Fishtown, Wallingford, Port Richmond, South Philadelphia, and throughout the region, hearts go out to his wife, Colleen, and to their children, Jake and Kathryn, and to sisters, Cheryl and Peg, and brother, Michael, and all Ted’s family.  His son, Jake, had paraded with his Dad for ten years.  When you saw them at rehearsal on a parking lot on a cold day, or in full costume in front of tv cameras and fan-filled grandstands, you got a glimpse of the Mummery that many never see. The down to earth bonds of a father and son, joyfully spending time together.  We will always remember Ted, the “Old Man,” forever young with his son.20171026_000642.jpg