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"He was like a force of nature"


This memorial website was created to remember our dearest Charles Judson Harwood Jr who was born in Tennessee on January 27, 1942 and passed away on January 11, 2013 at his home in Gipsy Hill, London.

NEW! Jud "CJ" Harwood had a lovely cremation ceremony on January 30, 2013, set to John Denver's "Take me Home, Country Roads" and "Fly Away". About 20 people were in attendence, thanks to a poster put up by his thoughtful Landlady, Linda O'Farrell.  

New! Please check this lovely story just before he died by reporter Andy Bloss: http://www.croydonguardian.co.uk/news/10092125._Parrot_man__searching_for_lost_bird/?ref=rss

He lived two distinctly different lives. He came from a conservative two parent Baptist Southern family raised with Country Clubs and top schools. He dutifully became an attorney like his father, married an English debutante, had two bright and shiny blond children, and settled into high society Tennessee.

But then the rebel started to emerge. He insisted on riding his motorcycle to the law firm to work. He got easily sidetracked by other things, like electrical engineering, photography, and music. And other girls. He got divorced and remarried, had two more children, lived in Saudi Arabia and then moved to London to start his own International Tax newsletter.

Eventually he shunned not only his first family, but also a second, as well as his father and sister and his many friends and admirers in Tennesse by disappearing into a different life in London with his two parrots, rarely to be heard from. He gave up his successful law practice to research politics and news like a conspiracy theory movie plot, until he was all but destitute.

But his friends and neighbors in London tell a story of man they called "CJ",  much beloved and admired; just a very different one than the one his family knew: one who kept chickens and pidgeons and lived in a big parrot cage with mounds of newspaper.

This site shares the collective memories of the people who knew him across the globe and over 50 years. Please feel free to share photos, stories, movies, and more as the last hurrah of a brilliant, socially troubled, handsome, light-hearted, reclusive fellow.

PS Please see the video page, as his neighbor and friend Charles Stuart had some movies of him as recent as this past Christmas!
Slideshow
Latest Memories
Lewis Dale Friend, classmate, teammate January 22, 2013
 

Charles Judson Harwood – One of my favorite Jud stories occurred when we were freshmen at MBA in 1956 or ’57.  Some may recall this differently, but what I remember took place in a general science class taught by Dr. Lee Merriweather.  Jud was sitting in the back of the classroom in what is now the Carter Building.  Dr. Merriweather was a serious teacher who expected and generally received his students’ full attention.  He often carried a hardwood meter stick, one meter long and about a half inch square, with which he would point to the blackboard, but which also conveyed a certain amount of authority and discouraged potential frivolity.  But Jud was Jud. 

I was sitting a couple of desks in front of Jud.  Several minutes into the class, Dr. Merriweather suddenly stopped his teaching and started walking quickly down the aisle, with a clinched jaw, his meter stick firmly in his grasp.  As he brushed by me, much to my great relief, I and the rest of the class followed his movement to the rear of the classroom.  There sat Jud in his own world, with a large white handkerchief held out with both hands in front of his face, moving it back and forth in front of his eyes, as if he were managing a puppet show --  so he could not possibly have seen what was coming.  At Jud’s desk, Dr. Merriweather raised his stick as if to strike a mighty blow at about the same time that Jud suddenly became aware of his presence.  With Jud’s shriek of terror and quick leap out of harm’s way, the entire class erupted in laughter.  Even Dr. Merriweather couldn’t keep from laughing.  I’m sure Dr. M. had planned just to whack the desk, but you could probably not have convinced Jud of that.  I don’t recall how many demerits he may have gotten for that little bit of class entertainment.

That was one side of Jud.  Another side showed a first class mind with a wide range of interests.  Jud was co-pilot of the first plane I ever flew in – a twin engine Aero Commander piloted by his Dad, who had been a pilot instructor during World War II.  We were 15 or 16 years old, barely old enough to drive a car, and Jud flew the plane and aided in navigation and radio communications for much of the trip from Nashville to Florida.  My knuckles were probably beyond white, but Jud showed complete competence and composure.  Still, as we crossed into Florida, when his Dad jokingly, but in a serious manner, said “I think we’re running out of gas.  Jud, can you land this thing?”  I was not amused. 

Jud was a vital presence in our MBA class and was often the topic of conversation.  He could go goo-goo eyed over a girl faster than anyone I ever met.  And the object of his affection would take on the qualities of Venus de Milo, Helen of Troy, Joan of Arc and Elizabeth Taylor, all at the same time, to hear him talk about her.  He also had musical talent, and I thought he and Chip Hutchison would soon be giving the Kingston Trio a run for their money.

Jud still stands out in memory, a wonderfully convivial guy and good friend with whom, unfortunately, as our lives developed, I lost touch.  His last few decades seem unreal to me, but I can still see him and still hear him from that brief time long ago when life was so different.  Rest in Peace.

Jimmy Killebrew Old friend and class/teammate January 22, 2013
 
First of all, my sympathy to Jud's children and family.  I remember Landon and Rebecca as infants and toddlers on Carden Avenue in Nashville.  By happenstance, the house where their parents lived as newly-weds was right across the street from my parents' house where I had grown up.

Jud and I were classmates at MBA.  We played football together and, as I recall, were in a summer baseball league together.  I think I was a "ringer" on his church's team.  Jud wound up "outside the box," but I remember a teenage experience that perhaps foreshadowed his later life.  Several of us had gone to a lake outside Nashville to launch a boat for water skiing.  The porblem was that the launch ramp was occupied by an abandoned tractor-trailer, blocking access to any other potential users.  We had no idea where the driver was or when he might return.  Then Jud decided he would move the eighteen wheeler himself.  So he got into the cab of the tractor and, to my complete and utter amazement, cranked it up, put it in gear and drove it forward and out of our way.  I have no reason to think he had ever driven one before.  Fifty years later that memory is still vivid and fresh.

I lost track of Jud following his divorce from Rosemary.  Like many of his old friends, I found myself perplexed by the various updates I would get as the years passed by.  I'm sure he found life more comfortable outside the box and probably wondered about all of his old friends that stayed inside.  But I'm sure all of his MBA classmates would agree that he remained "one of  us" to the end.  I regret that life separated us and mourn his passing.

Jimmy Killebrew
Diane Glasgow Jud in London January 21, 2013
 
Sam introduced me to Jud and Christie in London in 1977 after I finished my master's degree from Oxford.
We enjoyed dinner out at a posh restaurant.
He seemed very content living in England.

Much later when his Taxes International binders arrived, we were amazed by his work!

Sam Glasgow Jud's Friend in Nashville January 21, 2013
 
My first reaction was that "the third Muskateer is dead." 
I mean no disrespect. You see Bobby Frist, Jud and I were The Three Muskateers growing up at
Woodmont and MBA  We played together like we were brothers.  We went to each others houses
and had sleep overs, built hideouts, did stupid things (that was mostly Jud and I) and eventually
shared girl friends. Ah yes, Kathy Thompson was a cutie at Woodmont.  I remember thinking Jud
was playing unfair when he would go over to her house and take off his shirt and show off his
muscles. I was skinnier. I forget who won the day. Probably didn't matter anyway. Jud was
character #1 all his life. I do believe his greatest regret was losing Annie Herbert when he bailed out
 on her and hooked up with Rosemary in England. Jud did things his own way, and we all can
remember his sometimes crazy ways and obsessions, like trying to impeach President Reagen
for crimes and misdemeaners, etc .
I still have many note-binders from his Taxes International papers which he continued to send me
 for years. I assume he became a world class tax lawyer at some point since he was reporting
from all over the world.
All in all, I will miss Jud and have always hoped we could get him back to Tennessee where he
had many friends who cared about him.
Interestingly, he did have a circle of friends who valued him where he lived in his "gipsy Hill
neighborhood".  Appropriate name there-- Jud was a modern day Gypsy.  
  Sam Glasgow
 PS. He once decided he would call me "wart-nose" for my relatively large Glasgow nose.
 I always tried my best to assure him that I didn't give a flip what he called me, but of course I did.
 
    Rebecca, et al
      Of course, as you may realize, Jud was a terrific friend of mine growing up in the Woodmont
Elementary School area of Nashville. I have very fond memories of Jud and his parents and sister.
He was one of my best friends at Woodmont as well as at MBA High School.  We played football
together in Woodmont, I believe, and at MBA. We stayed in touch afterward only sporatically,
 I expect many in my class at MBA will have stories about Jud.
There has been a delay in getting the word out, so I am hoping you will be able to use some of this to
communicate to the familyabout our friend and classmate Jud.
  Sam Glasgow
 PS.  Bobby Wood is a classmate of the 1960 Class at MBA and he is forwarding my message to all our
 classmates.



 
rebecca@sopris.net Memories from Daughter Rebecca Driscoll January 21, 2013
 
I remember . . .
Camping in the Great Smokey Mountains. Landon, Brooke and I, wearing Little House on the Praire bonnets, sitting in the tiny backseat of his orange convertible VW bug, watching that the canoe we were towing didn't fall off the rig. Dad would sing by the campfire. To this day I love camping and singing by the campfire with my own guitar.

I remember . . .
Visiting him in Saudi Arabia. Landon and I went out there on our own at the age of about 7 and 9. He had us smuggle in yeast and wine making book . . we were used as Mules, I guess! I was terrified when the Saudi inspector found the book among my comic books. He smiles knowingly and put it back and let me through. The Orange Fanta on the back step would be boiling in the Saudi sunshine.

I remember . . .
Catching Fireflies in the backyard of his house in Tennesee. Its a memory I once wrote a poem about in Senior Honors English, and I won the year's best work in English in the school. My teacher said it was the finest thing he had ever read by a student because it made him cry, the memory was so vivid. The Help Annie would bring us Cinnamon Dentyne, and we would play school with Brooke and baby Jonathan.

I remember . . .
When I was 12, a bunch of boxes showed up on the doorstep. It was a "computer", only nobody knew what that word was, and there was nobody to help set it up. My mother told me to figure it out or get rid of it, so I figured it out. It was an Apple IIe, with the large floppy disks that you used to load the program, then swap the diskette out for a data disk. I only had a game, Wizardry, and a word processor. Eventually I got a second disk drive, and then lo and behold, a HARD DRIVE. Can you imagine, storing the programs in like a big jukebox? I think Dad was training me to type set his newsletter. I never did that, but I had such a huge jumpstart on everyone else, I became a computer tech. Thanks Dad.

I remember . . .
Dad's magazine Taxes International generated lots of FANTASTIC stamps from all over the world. I still have an enormous collection of stamps.

I remember . . .
We would visit Dad every year until we were 14. About that time, he moved out of the house with Christy, and moved into his office with lots of parrots. There was parrot poop everywhere. I can't believe he lived there. The last time I saw him I was 18, visiting during a year living in Germany. He called a few days before my marriage because he was in Tennesse visiting his father who had died. I didn't get to go to the funeral or see him because of the wedding.
Latest Condolences
paul harvey Mr Paul Anthony Harvey January 24, 2013
 
Dear family concerned,

My name is Paul Harvey and I have known CJ affectionately for around 8 years.
My partner and I liked him greatly. We knew him through our friendship with Charles and Cheryl who lived in the neighbouring house. We always found CJ to be truly honest and trustworthy, he was also a true gentlemen as I`m sure you all found him to be. We knew little of his past, as he rarely spoke of it. When we got together he always spoke highly of everybody.  We spoke of politics especially American and he was always on the computer with his particular interest at the time.
He was always opinionated and we would joke that the CIA would be on his trail. It was truly an honour to have known him, and will never forget him. He will be sorely missed.

Yours faithfully

Paul harvey 
Quick Gallery
RosemaryXJud 1965 RosemaryXJud 1964 JudX RosemaryX Landon 1987 CJXRosemary-Nashville1966 CJXRosemary-LandonXs Christening 1966-Callow CJXRosemary-Tennis Jud X Landon 1966 Jud X Thubelina - Nashville circa 1965 Jud X Rosemary wedding Callow
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