Ann Butler

BUTLER, ANN WOODBRIDGE Ann Woodbridge Butler, December 20, 1928, to April 12, 2014, age 85. Ann died peacefully in her sleep at Whitney Center, Hamden Connecticut, after a long illness. Ann was born in Larchmont, New York, the daughter of John Eliot Woodbridge (1903-1994) and Hazel Reynolds Woodbridge (1901-1996). Ann resided in Hamden, Connecticut from 1950-1974, in North Haven, Connecticut from 1974 to 2009, and then at Whitney Center in Hamden from 2009-2014. On July 30, 1949, Ann was married to David F. Butler (1928-2003), a graduate of Webb Institute and Yale University, and an author, firearms expert and yacht designer. They were divorced in November 1972. She married Charles Stuart Hartley, a long-time Guidance Counselor at Hamden High School, on December 21, 1973, and they were divorced in June 1984. Ann was thereafter a long-time companion of David Frank, of Hamden, Connecticut, who died in 2009. Ann graduated from Vassar College in 1950, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. During the 1960’s, she attended graduate programs at Southern Connecticut State University, receiving a Masters Degree in Education and, later, a Masters Degree in Education Counseling. She was a member of the Unitarian Society of New Haven from 1950 until her death. Active at both the local and national levels, Ann served as a long-time member of the USNH Board of Trustees, as Vice-President, and as President of the Society from 1983-1985. Her many Board Committee assignments included Church Furnishings, Adult Programs, Nominating, Deferred Giving, Endowment Development, History and Archives and Ministerial Relations. In addition, she was a member of the choir and the Women’s Association, and served on their board and as their treasurer. At the national level, Ann served, from 1994-2001, as a member of the National Board of Trustees of the Unitarian Universalist Association. Between 1970 and 1990, Ann taught Psychology and Behavioral Science at Hamden High School, and also worked there as a Guidance Counselor. In addition, Ann was a long-time member, and served as President, of the local African Violet Society, and was certified as a judge by the AVS. Ann loved to travel and, while in good health, visited Europe virtually annually. She also traveled to China, India, and Australia, among other destinations. Between the ages of 7 and 9, she suffered from polio and accomplished all of the above despite her resulting physical handicap. During her life, she was a great inspiration to her many friends and relatives, students at Hamden High School, members of the Unitarian Society, and others. She led by her example. She is survived by her sons David Eliot Butler, of Highlands Ranch, Colorado and Donald Woodbridge Butler of Guilford, Connecticut, and five grandchildren: Tara Kellogg Butler (Centennial, Colorado), Brandon Eliot Butler (Newton, Massachusetts), Lanzi Woodbridge Butler (Guilford, Connecticut), Jeremy Francis Butler (Denver, Colorado) and Abigail Amalia Butler (Miami, Florida). A private service is planned. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Unitarian Society of New Haven, 700 Hartford Turnpike, Hamden, CT 06518.
Published in The New Haven Register on Apr. 20, 2014