Carlton Bob Butler
Carlton Bob Butler, 89, of Tallahassee, Florida, passed away on Sunday, July 18, 2021. He joined his Savior and loved ones in heaven with his family present, loving him through the process to his new home.
Bob was born on June 5, 1932, in Calvary, Georgia, to Robert Louis and Pearl Lee Butler. The family moved to Quincy, Florida, when Bob was five years old. Bob spent his lifetime between Calvary, Quincy and Tallahassee, building a career, raising a family, loving his kinfolk, playing golf, worshipping in his church and above all, serving God.
As a child, he was part of a large family, one of ten children, and they lived on a farm. Bob was one of the younger ones, with Gertrude as the oldest and Virgel as the youngest. In between were Raber, Ermon, H.M., Elga, Joe, Delia Jean and Winona. He graduated from Quincy High School in 1951, and more importantly, accepted Christ as his Savior at age 17 while attending First Baptist Church in Quincy.
In 1952, Bob enlisted in the United States Army serving until 1954. He then briefly attended the University of Florida pursuing animal husbandry. He said his goal in life was to get a comma in his paycheck and he began his career in life insurance with Acme United Life Insurance Company. Soon thereafter he joined Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, where he served as an agent for more than 50 years. He was very successful in his insurance and financial advisory career, which was reassuring after his mother, Pearl, feared he wouldn't make enough to "put salt in his bread."
Bob's own family started when he married Vernon Frances Andrews in 1958. Their first house was a duplex they built in Tallahassee, allowing them to rent one half and live in the other. This duplex would eventually become Bob's office where he continued to work until just days before his death. Bob and Vernon had one child, born in 1962, Robert Carlton Butler, named after his father and grandfather. After Vernon's death in 2006, Bob became reacquainted with a friend from high school, Harriet Mahaffey Wilson. They were married in 2007 and enjoyed 14 wonderful years of joy, companionship and romance.
When Bob was young, he enjoyed playing fast pitch softball for many years. Golf eventually became his passion and primary sport, developing lifelong friendships with the foursomes that played with, weekly for decades. He enjoyed playing tennis with Vernon first, then Robert, creating many memories such as early morning summer games following Robert's high school graduation.
Bob settled into First Baptist Church in Tallahassee. He helped Vernon with preschool Sunday School, served as Chairman of the Deacons, supported the Deaf and Blind Ministry and lived out his faith in worship and fellowship for more than 60 years.
Bob was supremely blessed to have an extended family that continued to grow throughout his lifetime. He is survived by his wife Harriet Wilson Butler, his only son, Robert Butler, and his daughter-in-law Heidi Updike Butler. He is also survived by his sister, Delia Jean Hersey, brother Virgel Butler; sisters-in-law, Sadie Butler, Janice Butler, Mary Jo Butler and Margie Seidel, and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. His later life was enriched by Harriet's family, Ann Haddon (Greg), Becca Shell and Mary Beth Paris (Frank), and their children.
Bob is predeceased by his wife, Vernon; brothers, Raber, Ermon (Marilee), H.M., Joe (Bessie) and his sisters, Gertrude (Clarence), Elga (George) and Winona (Harold).
His celebration of life service will be at 11 am, Saturday, July 24, 2021, at First Baptist Church, Tallahassee, Florida. Recognizing the many lives that Bob touched, the following opportunities are available for fellowship:
• A catered reception for the family at 7 pm, Friday, July 23, 2021, at Rocky Comfort Lodge;
• A catered celebration of life and dinner on the grounds, open for everyone, from 5-8 pm, Saturday, July 24, 2021 at Rocky Comfort Lodge, 6225 Old Federal Road, Quincy, Florida;
• For those not attending the above visitations, the family will receive love immediately after the memorial service in the chapel at First Baptist Church.
Memorial contributions may be made to First Baptist Church, 108 West College Avenue, Tallahassee, Florida, 32301.
Charles McClellan Funeral Home, 15 S. Jackson St., Quincy, FL., 850-627-7677, is assisting the family with arrangements.
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Published by Tallahassee Democrat from Jul. 20 to Jul. 23, 2021.