Arthur Chauncy “Art” Butler, passed away on June 7, 2019 surrounded by his loving family. He was born on April 5, 1917 in Fertile, Minnesota and was the second oldest of five children of Harold Wilkins and Minda Christian Butler. He graduated from Fertile High School in 1936. He enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps in February 1941 and was a technical sergeant in the 10th Fighter Squadron of the 50th Fighter Group. During WWII, he participated in the D-Day Invasion and liberation of France. After his deployment, he settled with his wife, Doris Granger Butler, in Lake City, Florida. During his working career, he was the Vice President of the Granger Lumber and Supply Company, a family business, until its closing in 1989. He held several leadership positions in the Lions Club, most notably President in 1955 and was recipient of the Melvin Jones Fellow Award for his dedication to humanitarian services. He served on the Columbia County Forestry Committee and served on the Board of Directors of the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce. He was an active member of the First Presbyterian Church for many years, and was honored as a Deacon Emeritus for faithfully serving the Church.
After retirement, he enjoyed attending local D-Day meetings with fellow veterans and reunions with his squadron, spending time with family, and vacationing in St. Augustine Beach. He was a humble, hard-working, and generous man who loved his family above all else. He was proud of his service to our country and was a member of the Greatest Generation.
In addition to his parents, he is predeceased by three of his siblings, George Theodore, Harold Wilkins, Jr., and Caroline Christian.
He is survived by his wife and two children, Ann Butler Brown (Thomas) and Arthur Chauncy “Art” Butler, Jr. (Linda); four grandchildren, Angela Marie King, Alison King Eubank (Shane), Sarah Butler O’Rourke (Michael), and Rachel Caroline Butler; and two great grandchildren, Riley Ann Eubank and Darren James Eubank; youngest sister, Marian Mae Butler Seelig.
The visitation will be held on Monday, June 10 from 5:00-7:00 pm at the Gateway-Forest Lawn Funeral Home. His funeral service will be on Tuesday, June 11 at 2:00 pm at the First Presbyterian Church. Reverend Ken Goodrich, Pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Reverend Fred Gaylard, Pastor of First Advent Christian Church, and Reverend Mike Brecheen, Pastor of Fort White Methodist Church will officiate the service. The interment will follow at the Memorial Cemetery. The family requests in lieu of flowers, a tribute gift to the National WWII Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana to honor his military service, www.nationalww2museum.org/giv , or a memorial gift to the Suwannee Valley Hospice Care Center 6037 W US Highway 90, Lake City, FL 32055. Arrangements are under the direction and care of Gateway-Forest Lawn Funeral Home, 3596 S. US HWY 441, Lake City, FL, 32025. Please leave words of comfort for the family at www.gatewayforestlawn.com
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