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Merrill Lundgren "The Bucket Man"

Merrill Lundgren “The Bucket Man”

MEET THE FIRST MAN TO TEACH BUCKET FILLING TO CHILDREN

Merrill H. Lundgren was affectionately dubbed “The Bucket Man” over 12 years ago by middle-school students in his first classroom workshop.

Although The Bucket Man has used the metaphor of the bucket and dipper (created 50 years ago by the late Dr. Donald O. Clifton) since 1979 in his well-known quality-of-life seminars, he did not bring the message to schools until 2003.  Since that day in May, the excellent reputation and powerful ripple effects of Merrill’s programs have spread throughout the country.  His work has inspired the creation of several children’s books about bucket filling, and inspired son Peter Lundgren to create Bucketfillers For Life in 2007.

Merrill is proud to have served in the U.S. Army Military Police during World War II.  He landed on Utah Beach on D-Day + 4, and he received five Battle Stars for his two years of service in Europe through the end of the conflict.  In 1994, Peter compiled a manuscript of hundreds of letters that Merrill wrote to his wife, Edna, during the war.  The manuscript, Almost at the Front expertly weaves his letters into actual war events taking place at that time. The manuscript was subsequently discovered by British war historians at the Second World War Experience Centre in Leeds, England.  It, along with some of Merrill’s original letters, is on display at the centre.

The Bucket Man says “My dream of leaving a legacy of love and caring is being realized in ways I could not have imagined.  Thousands and thousands of children have benefited from this message.”

Merrill Lundgren died on January 10, 2016 at the age of 96. He will be greatly missed by all whose lives he touched.

“Hi Kelly, it was so great to have you at our school, and the students and staff all gave you a huge thumbs up! Your passion for this work is apparent, and the students were so engaged during your entire presentation. I loved how you brought them to laughter then brought them back to listen carefully to your message. We would love to have you back next year!”

Melissa Alfstad, Counselor, Roosevelt Elementary School, Spokane, WA
“Thanks again for coming to Kohl, the impact on our school was immediately noticeable. Parents approached me the next day wanting more information because their children came home talking about filling buckets. Below are some comments from the teachers about the programs and the staff development: - I thought it was great, both the assemblies and the PD. Kelly is really good at what he does. - It was definitely worthwhile and gave me some good ideas for the future - The best part is that we can immediately use this in the classroom without much more instruction - I thought Kelly was humorous and positive and I enjoyed his presentations - I LOVED IT!!! Thank you for bringing this into our building, and I hope we can have another one next year - I really liked the assembly and found the after school presentation for teachers inspiring

Eric Warneke, Counselor, Kohl Elementary School, Broomfield, CO
“Thank you Mike for visiting our school and sharing so many awesome bucketfilling ideas with our students. Your presentations were engaging and beneficial to all of our students and staff members. You definitely filled many buckets here!”

Teresa Simmons, Principal, Arrowhead Elementary School, Phoenix, AZ