CHARLES BUTLER

CHARLES (CHARLIE/CHUCK) ROBERT BUTLER 1942 - 2014 Apparently, I died at home on Thursday, March 6, 2014. Lenora and Allison were holding my hands and the TMC's Messiah was playing in the background. I have been living with prostate cancer since May, 2008. A friend told me that the toughest thing he ever did was write the obituary for his wife. He suggested that since I like to write, why don't I write mine? So I am! I was born in Kingston, Ontario, but raised from the age of 5 in Leaside. I graduated from Leaside High School, as did both of my children. Then I earned an M.A. in English (University of Toronto) and M.Ed. in Curriculum/Reading (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education). At Victoria College, Lenora Beacock heard me playing the piano. I guess she liked it for we married in 1967, our Centennial project! Chris came first, soon followed by Allison. They know that I am enormously proud of the people they have become. Chris married Jennifer Andrews whom I love as a daughter and who has been the perfect mother to our grandchildren Alex and Gillian, the twinkles in their grandparents' eyes. And not to be forgotten is my sister, Susan Woeller, and her wonderful family. I was privileged to teach English in North York Schools for 33 years to our ever-changing student body who came from all over the world to Canada, the country I had the great luck to be born in. That fact alone has always amazed me. Lenora and I have been a good team. I supported her as she built her very successful marketing research company, Butler Research Associates and she sacrificed much as a "choir wife" during my 34-year membership in the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir. Our cottage in Haliburton has been our retreat whenever work pressures mounted. We've always traveled, first with the children in a camper trailer and later, for more than 20 years, Lenora and I have traveled the world. And we have always been each other's best friend. Since retiring, I have volunteered in the Recording Studio of the CNIB and read with Grade 1 children in the Volunteer Readers Programme that Lenora established several years ago after learning that many children in early grades were not achieving up to the standard norms. I've had a grand life. The "gift" of cancer for me has been the opportunity in the past few years to live each day with a heightened sense of what I've called the "joyful wonder" of living. It has also permitted me to connect in an exceptionally meaningful way with my "embarrassment of friends" who have been so supportive. My thanks to you all and especially the staff at Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre. There will be a quiet family celebration of my life. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, 720 Bathurst Street, Suite 404, Toronto M5S 2R4. Condolences and memories may be forwarded through www.humphreymiles.com Be well, all! Charlie

Funeral Home

Humphrey Funeral Home - A.W. Miles Chapel
1403 Bayview Avenue Toronto, ON M4G 3A8
416-487-4523

Published in the Toronto Star on Mar. 8, 2014