Thanx to all who have Walter on their mind this spring. This year anniversary of his death has been hard. He is so missed. A good man, good poet, and good friend. I have posted a couple of pictures of him here. Want all the folks in Leroy to know you were not forgotten by him. He loved you, wrote about you in his poems, and told your stories often. S Stephanie
Walt and I probably shared more nights together, more of our feelings about life and a few nights that we could not remember the next day. I always admired his command of our language, and I told him so often. Growing up Walt was one of my best friends and I thought of him so much over the years. I am very sad because of his passing, and I will never forget him. He was truly one of the best people I have met in my entire life, (and I have met many people in my life). Walt is in my prayers every night, I will never forget my friend.
im sad and smile too when i think of walt and our adventures at holy family etc im happy that he found a great girl and will be in all our thoughts at the reunion and always bless you steph for making him happy and wish you and family well-barb schlonski
Walter and I were in Mr. Klingensmith's science class and we sat next to each other. He knew how shy I was and he was always there to cheer me on. I grew very fond of him but was, regrettably, too shy to pursue it. At the time, I knew he felt the same way. I have always had a special place in my heart for him. He was, truly, a gentle soul.
Walt will be missed at our 50th class reunion this summer . I believe that everyone in our class has rejoiced celebrating his success and gifted talents. I have often thought of him and smiled when I thought of at our 45th reunion when I gave him a hug and in his coolest Elvis way said, "Where were all you girls when I was 17?" You will be with us always, Wally!
Wally was in my Le Roy High School Class of '64. I could not believe that Wally had passed away. He meant a lot to the entire class. I do believe that he will be looking down on us during our 50th Class Reunion. We certainly will miss him.
R.I.P. Wally! We sure had some good times in the late 60's.
I had the distinct pleasure of being a student at Hesser. Mr. Butts was the reason why I stayed in college after my freshman year. He was an inspiration and a FANTASTIC teacher/role model. I just learned of his passing today. I am saddened for the loss. Walter is truly a great man who mad a huge impact on my life.
Thank you all for your kind thoughts and spirit. I am putting one foot in front of the other, getting through this loss. Your words have been such a help. I hope you can join us for stories, memories and a celebration of Walter's life May 19th in Portsmouth NH. Please feel free to contact me if you need information or specifics.
I was saddened to hear that Wally had passed away. Wally had a sense of fun. I feel fortunate to have known Wally in Boston for many years and to have enjoyed his poetry. I will miss him. Fran Beard
To Walter's family, My deepest sympathy on Wally's passing. I treasure his books of poetry that reveal so much of the depth of his character. What a gift he gave us through his work! Beth Herron Cahaney, Class of '64 LeRoy and Class of '60 Holy Family
Walter-You now have joined your dad and mom whom you haven't seen for many years. You set your goals in life and worked very hard to be the great poet that you are. I send my condolences to your wife, daughter & son in law along with your beautiful grand children. Even though I haven't seen you in many years you will be very sadly missed my good friend. 1964 class member
My Dad and Wally's Dad both worked at the Jell-O factory in LeRoy all those many years ago. I remember his ever present smile when we passed in the halls of LHS. I am happy I had the chance to visit with him at our last reunion and am very proud of his success.
Walter was one of my father's best friends. I remember Walter Butts as a kind, gentle and very humorous man. He remains in my heart and mind because he brought my father so much joy in life being his friend. I will always remember Walter and I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my father this past June - I'm glad that they finally have the chance to see each other again after all these years...
Rest in peace Walter!
My deepest sympathy. I will always remember Walter as a kink and gentle man.
Michele Warfield an old Hesser faculty member
Walter was one of the good guys. I remember when S and he started dating and how quickly they meshed. Though we haven't been in touch for years, there are always good memories surrounding his name. Be in peace, gentle man.
My mother and Walters mother were good friends and worked together at the Le Roy Sterling Diner. Walter and myself sometimes ate lunch together in that diner. It made me proud that I had once knew him after he became a well known poet. I emailed him after I found out he was in Le Roy for the 2009 reunion and that I was sad that I had missed him. He said that he planed to come back but that never happened.
Rest in peace Walter and someday I will know where to find you.
Gene Beaumont Jr. Le Roy Class of 1960
Hi Stephanie and family. I am so sorry to hear of Walter's passing. I didn't get to know Walt in high school but it was so good to see him and you in 2009 at our 45th. class reunion. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Sincerely, Jeanette Ridge Cook, class of '64 Leroy, NY.
My thought are with you and your family.
Wally, Rest in Peace kind friend. You will be missed at the next reunion. Condolences to the Family.
Dave Feltes LeRoy Class of 1964
I was pleased to get to know Walter better in his last years and to publish his last book. Working with him was a joy (except when I had to air out his manuscript to get the cigarette smell out). I got to know his poems intimately and came to admire their subtlety and mastery. Generous, accommodating, kind, humble in all our dealings. I am happy that his poetry lives on, but we lost a wonderful soul. I will miss him very much.
Please accept our most heartfelt thoughts and condolences regarding the passing of Walt. We are so sorry for your loss.
Manchester VNA Hospice
I am so sorry for your loss. Shortly after he became the Poet Laureate of NH, I was honored to introduce Walter and have him begin our reading series at Gibson's Bookstore on January 20, 2010. Walter's poetry has meant a lot to me over the years; so has his passion and honesty in conversation about his work as a poet, his generosity and kindness as a man.
I was sad to hear of the loss of Walter Butts I took classes and workshops with him, he will be missed and my thoughts are with his family
God speed Walt, my neighbor and friend, from Clay Street, Leroy, NY. After 40 plus years we reconnected in Rochester, at a poetry reading much to Walt's surprise. I am so very thankful for the time we had together in 2008, to meet your family, share some Clay Street stories (just like your poem - Clay Street), laugh and shed a tear or two. To Stephanie and family, please accept our sincere condolences.
Sue & Spike Carmichael, Leroy NY
I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.
So sorry to hear of my classmate's passing. I remember so well the classes we took together and his kind gentle spirit. I always thought Walter would become an artist since his drawings were so good. I was pleasantly surprised when I learned of his success with poetry. RIP in peace my friend.
Wally RIP. My condolences to his family.
Tom Seeley-LeRoy Class 1964
I am vey sorry for your loss and sadness. I went to hear Walter at the poetry reading in Batavia, and thought he was wonderful. I cherish that memory.
will always hold dear the fact that walt told me he had thoughts of me and mentioned my name in a poem he laughed and said he forgot my middle name and used barbara jean i will treasure that god bless
i am so sad as walt and i were so close growing up and have so many memories my thoughts are with you stephanie and he will never leave from my teen days spent with him will think of you both often
I am so sad to hear of Walter's passing. He was so kind and sweet in high school. My condolences to his family.
Walter, so many memories from many years ago. So much you accomplished since then. Your home town is proud of you. I'm glad we could re-connect even if only briefly. Patty
Wally RIP...you walked your own fine path.
Hal Van Horn
Leroy - Class of 1964
Walter, I wish I had a chance to know you longer. I was happy to hear and discuss your poetry at our GO ART! events last year. You and Stephanie were delightful if even for a few short hours. Thank you for your contribution to the collective awareness of the world and for your thoughts allowing the rest of us to understand and appreciate life a little better. Jee
To our most renowned member of the class of 1964, Le Roy NY, I am so glad we finally found you before our last reunion in 2009. It was wonderful seeing you then and in May 2012, for your live poetry readings. What a wonderful success story! My condolences to Stephanie and your family. Love, Carol
Our deepest sympathy to Stephanie and all of Walters family. Your classmates in Leroy loved and will truly miss you. We lost track of one another but finding you brought joy to us all. Your accomplishments have made us proud.
Walter you will be missed. You brought joy, laughter and great conversation everytime we got together . I alway looked forward to our banter and comical debates. Your unique pool playing skills and interesting approach to playing poker always kept our group entertained. Your kind hearted warm personality always left me with feelings of joy and peace everytime we met. I am a better person for knowing you . God Bless you .